Spring 10×10 Remix: Days 6 & 7

I’m doing the 10×10 spring remix hosted by Un-Fancy and StyleBee. All this work week and next, I’ll be using 10 pieces of clothing to create 10 different outfits, using self-imposed limitations to spark some creativity. All the details – and the clothes (all thrifted)– here.

Leave it to me to forget that work would be closed this past Monday (observance of Easter); I spent the first half of the day in pjs and the second half in workout clothes. And yesterday was a whirlwind of meetings, prepping for church council, and voting in a special election, so today you get TWO 10×10 outfits. Aren’t you lucky? :X

Day 6

Post-vote pics at home from a very fore-shortened perspective (thanks to the Spouse for capturing photos):

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H&M dress; J. Crew belt; Monet cuff bracelet; sandals by Clarks (retail); “I’m a Georgia voter” sticker courtesy of the GA elections department (placement courtesy of my preschooler).

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Blazer by Merona

Styling notes: I did the same trick with my belt as last week, turning the buckle part around to the back so it didn’t weigh down the belt below the waist seam. I’ve trimmed up a bit from running more lately; I think it may be time to put another notch in my belts so this isn’t a problem the rest of the summer.
I’ve stuck with a relatively simple necklace here, in a length that fits the v-neck; come full-on summer I’ll probably pair this with some of my bold, shorter necklaces. I could probably also pair this shorter necklace with a longer pendant, but as I’m a fan of cleaner looks that’s probably a stretch.

Thoughts on this outfit: So this dress is a keeper. I love the cut, the length, and the different (for me) neckline. I’m just going to ignore the odd lining around the neck, or perhaps chalk it up to “character.”
The blazer is super comfortable, like wearing a sweatshirt, and I love the silhouette as well – my ideal blazer silhouette, skimming without flaring. I’m going to wear it with my blue sheath dress as well, but if I can’t convince myself it goes with my grey dress pants, I’m not sure how much additional wear I’ll get out of it. Y’all know I love print mixing, but layering this pattern right on top of my patterned blouses doesn’t always look right. And I want blazers that work with most of my wardrobe, not just 1 or 2 pieces. I’ll probably keep it through this summer and then send it on if I don’t find enough slots for it.

Day 7
Today we’re back in blouse-and-pencil-skirt territory.  Huzzah!

I paired the linen/cotton “soft wash shirt” from Banana Republic with my H&M pencil skirt and the same Clarks sandals (retail) above:WP_20170419_12_11_55_Pro

I had planned to keep the same jewelry as well, until I noticed that the (mostly) solid color blocking here felt kind of… boring. The outfit was asking for a little more interest, so I swapped out my gold studs for dangly earrings I made, and suddenly there’s a bit more oomph happening:
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Closeup on those earrings, made from thrifted parts:
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Here’s the outfit in profile:
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Styling notes: added some pizzazz to plain outfit with a little more “out there” jewelry; rolled those roll-tab sleeves ’cause it’s gonna get warm this afternoon.

Thoughts on this outfit: blouse + pencil skirt = win. Love the earrings.
Still not sold on the shirt; it is very soft but still has more structure/stiffness than my normally silky blouses and thus doesn’t lay as well when tucked in. Relatedly, the texture is a little too…hmm… rustic? for my taste. I don’t hate it, it just doesn’t look quite as polished paired next to something smoother. But my white skirt is also textured and this skirt is rumpled enough to pass as textured… ha.
I know I want to be able to wear it out over pants, and that would involve tailoring (either by myself – yipes – or an actual tailor), so I might just leave it as is and donate it for someone else to enjoy. When you’re using two paragraphs to convince yourself about a thrift find, it may be time to let it go.

 

How’s your 10×10 going? Whether you’re doing one or not, is your spring weather throwing you curveballs fashion-wise?
I’ll be away from the office this Friday and Monday as well, so look for Day 8 tomorrow and Days 9 & 10 next week.

 

10×10 Spring Remix – Day 2

I’m doing the 10×10 spring remix hosted by Un-Fancy and StyleBee. All this work week and next, I’ll be using 10 pieces of clothing to create 10 different outfits, using self-imposed limitations to spark some creativity. All the details – and all the clothes – here.

Day 2: white H&M shift dress paired with the same dress coat (Tahari by Arthur S. Levine) as yesterday, Clarks sandals (retail), and a little added interest with a leopard print belt by J. Crew and my new (to me) cuff bracelet (Monet):

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This dress. I love the length, the neckline is new (to me) and fresh, and the sleeves aren’t so cap they feel like afterthoughts:
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It has interesting structural details – 2 subtle pleats up front, diamond-shaped bias seams on the side (I’m making up these terms as I go along), and a strange, Jessica Rabbit-reminiscent lining showing through at the bust :
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Styling note: I turned the belt around because the weight of the metal buckle was pulling down in the front and keeping it from lining up with the very obvious waist seam. Ta-da:
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It’s hidden when I wear the coat but makes for an unexpected detail even when not hidden:WP_20170411_11_23_23_Pro (1)

This outfit is my sweet spot – a classic sheath dress with something a little funky to keep it from being boring. The coat is, again, super elegant and I dig that it’s not the exact same length as the dress, which keeps the pairing from looking too matchy-matchy or cutting me off at the knees.

Though I’m still not sure how I feel overall about this dress (that weird lining!), I’m excited to style it a different way next week to get a better feel for  whether it’s a keeper – which is, after all, why it’s in my 10×10.

What’s your Day 2 look like? What do you think of this look? Scroll down to comment!

My Style Icons

My style ranges from drapey cardigans over skinny pants to vintage dresses to oversized Liz Claiborne sweaters.

But if I were to describe my *ideal* personal style with an equation featuring stylish people of the world, it would look like this:

1/2 Inès de la Fressange + 1/2 Nicola Sturgeon + a dash of Luke Spiller.

Expressed visually, this would be:

style iconsSource; Source; Source

Let’s take a closer look at each piece of the pie.

 

Inès de la Fressange – Gentlewoman Chic

Model/businesswoman/muse/author Inès de la Fressange exemplifies the feminine side of gentlewoman chic with her fitted blazers, trim trousers, bold blouses, and always a touch of funk – see those two-toned shoes peeking out from underneath her pants?  And I count at least 3 patterns in this ensemble, maybe 4:

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Let’s admire the bold contrast here between the yellow and the monochrome jacket, with the whole look pulled together by that playful, yet ascot-like scarf.  And that superbly cut blazer!

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Also, brava to another poster child of gentlewoman chic, Garance Doré, for that incredible photo. Source

 

My take:
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Nicola Sturgeon – Stylin’ Power Dresses

Leading up to her election as first minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon started working with an Edinburgh dress boutique to create a wardrobe of solid-color sheath dresses with unique twists – what the boutique owners call “a soft power look” (check out the NY Times article on her wardrobe here – and then we can all talk about the politics of how women’s dress and physical appearance affect their electability as public servants):

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Shoulders!  She has this one in at least 3 colors – source

…for example, in orange:

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Hello asymmetrical neckline and slit on the side:

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Bonus: the completely fabulous, satin-y contrasting lapel on this blazer – that’s some edge, woman!  Theresa May, take note. (Or not.  Since, you know, how stylish or chic you look ≠ your ability to govern.)

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My take:

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While I do love a good plain dress for its versatility and the great canvas it makes for accessories, I really thrill to dresses like Nicola’s and the one above with its unexpected neckline and sassy gold chains.  Right now it’s the only one in my closet that fits the bill, as most of the rest of my dresses are solid-color and plain.  But here’s a throwback to a couple I loved that had to be sent on due to pilling:

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

Ahh, back when I did bathroom selfies.  Good times.

 

Luke Spiller – Glam Rock

Luke looks, sings, and moves like the love child of Freddie Mercury and Mick Jagger.  I’ve already blogged about his style here; suffice it to say that his boldly metallic, besequined allure is called to mind every time I spot a glitzy top I should say no to.

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My take:

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And… last week I found these exact pants I had long ago regretted not thrifting and I bought ’em without even trying them on.  They’re amazing:

A photo posted by LeahLW (@thriftshopchic) on

Now to figure out where to wear them.

 

Who are your style icons?  Could be someone you know personally, a character in a movie or book (illustrations help), or a public persona.   Keep in mind that it’s not about emulating someone else’s look to a T, but rather helping you define your own style.

If you’ve never tried to figure it out before, I encourage you to give it a go.   Once you’ve identified a person or two or three, ask yourself: what is it about their sartorial presentation that sets your heart aflutter? How do they exemplify what you love to wear?  I’m willing to bet it’ll help you sharpen your own aesthetic.  Scroll down to share your thoughts!

 

Fall /Winter Wardrobe Preview

We’re still in hot temps here but I know many of you have already started the slide into fall weather so I’m going to post some of what I *think* will work as my core/fringe items to get those autumnal juices flowing.  This is not an exhaustive or restrictive list but covers most of what I plan on wearing.

As you may remember, I’ve been restyling my cold weather wardrobe as I try to figure out some styles I love that keep me warm. I’ve been doing it during the summer to give me time to think about additions and go slowly without the pressure of chilly temps right around the corner – but this also means I haven’t been able to wear any of the clothes together yet! So consider this most definitely a first draft.

(Also, the cords below are currently at the tailor to be transformed into actual slim pants instead of boot cuts, so you’ll just have to use your imagination.)

Enjoy!

 

Mixing my core/fringe model with a dual-silhouette idea borrowed from Un-Fancy, I’ll do two core silhouettes – my go-to silhouettes that most of the clothes in my cold weather closet can participate in – and a fringe silhouette – the one I use occasionally to mix things up a little and that’s made up of some pieces that don’t mix and match as well with the core silhouettes.

Here’s my first core silhouette, continued from summer into fall:

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Torso-skimming top over slim pants.  This silhouette will cover a variety of temperatures with some lightweight tops, some toppers (cardignas, blazers, ruanas, etc.) over lightweight tops, and finally proper sweaters (with shell underneath for really chilly days).  Please ignore the tag on the top – recently thrifted and not yet worn! – and imagine the pants a little slimmer in general.  All my slim trousers were at the tailor.

 

Second core silhouette: sheath/sweater dress over leggings and long sleeves (as needed)

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Two more dresses I’ll be wearing in this manner: here and here

Merona – Land’s End – Merona – Jacqueline Ferrar – George – all thrifted

 

Here’s my fringe silhouette, moving from the starting list last winter to more of a relief pitcher this year:

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Fitted top over flares
I like the chic, long lines of this silhouette, but I got a little tired of it last year, so it’ll make some appearances this year but not take top billing.  Now I’m mixing metaphors…

 

And here are the items that will fit into each silhouette:

Skim over slim – lightweight tops

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Japna – Madewell – Meadow Rue – Merona – Ambiance Apparel – Piazza Sempione – White Stag – Coldwater Creek –  Pull and Bear (detail of sweater worn in silhouette photo above) –  all thrifted

 

Skim over slim – sweaters

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Liz Clairborne – Gap new with tags – Forever 21 – Mossimo – French Connection – Liz Claiborne – Loft (the back is more interesting) – all thrifted

 

Skim over slim – toppers

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Old Navy – Loft – Haberdashery by Personal – Merona – Cartonnier – all thrifted

 

Skim over slim – bottoms

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Uniqlo – Ralph Lauren new with tags (to be tailored to slim fit) – Banana Republic (to be tailored to slim fit) – Chico’s – F21 – all thrifted

 

Fit over flare – tops

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Banana Republic (featured in silhouette photo above – Express – both thrifted

 

Fit over flare – bottoms

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Old Navy – thrifted

 

 

Outerwear
Just one coat, because it makes me just that happy:

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J. Crew – thrifted

This feels like a lot, but not counting leggings, shells, or outwear, it’s 35 pieces – right about at the sweet spot for typical mix-and-match capsule wardrobes (although I do have a few more things on my thrift list that might either grow this list or elbow some of these items out of the way!).  I’ll keep you updated on what works, what doesn’t, what gets worn and what sits at the back of the closet or drawer.

What’s in your capsule or edited wardrobe this fall/winter?  Scroll down to comment!

 

Happy fall!