I can't think of a an outfit that more epitomizes summer than a chambray shirt with white pants. The combination of blue and white just seems to say picnics, sunshine and longer hours of daylight. Adding a summer hat, bag and a pair of comfy sneakers and you have the outfit in today's post. The inspiration for this outfit came from an old advertisement for Chico's. Their adds always seem to have the prettiest outfit combinations; a great marketing idea, of course. They want you to buy their products and they do have wonderful clothing. However, if you are like me, then you like to find pieces in your own closet to make use of the clothing I already have and occasionally add a piece or two from thrift stores and regular retailers. While my pieces are not exact duplicates of the original add, they do mimic the outfit well.
I didn't realize until after I took these photos that I should have smoothed the top out in the front by pulling it down. Ha, ha. The joys of being in a hurry when you are taking photos.
Both of these pieces are from Christopher and Banks and I bought them in the store. You've seen these white ankle pants on the blog before. You can see those posts here, here, here and here. For this post I rolled the pants up to create more of a cropped pant look, which is what the original outfit had.
I've styled this light chambray popover top on the blog before as well. You can see that post here. You can see in the next three photos more details on the shirt, including the hi-low hem, front pocket, three button closure, v-neck, no collar and roll tab sleeves.
This is such an easy outfit to put together. I kept it completely casual and didn't even add any jewelry, although you could easily throw on some pretty colored bangles or bead to add a pop of color. You could also wear sandals or flip flops and carry a bright colored bag to add color in a different way.
I've had my cream macrame bag for years and it is a cute little number for shopping when I want to carry something light and less bulky. I've also had these white Keds for years as well and they are starting to show some wear.
What kind of outfit do you envision when you think of summer? I love to hear your feedback. I appreciate those of you who subscribe to my blog. If you like my blog, share it with your friends and family.
If you are just joining me on the blog, this is week four of my Marvelous Maxis series, where I am looking at various maxi dresses and how to style them. The first week I styled a dress with a fun fluttery bohemian vibe (Week 1), the second week revolved around a comfortable blue and red number (Week 2), and last week I wore my Christopher and Banks dress with a columnar skirt (Week 3). You can click on each of the weeks to view the other posts.
This week's post returns to a simpler maxi dress with a tank top bodice and straight skirt. This is a tee shirt type knit which pulls on and off just as easily. The waist is gathered elastic. This dress has no bells or whistles and most often I would not pull this out if I wanted to get dressed up. This simple black number says beach and lounge wear all over it. Of course that made me curious to see if I could actually dress it up.
I really have no idea what I am doing with my face. Just being goofy, I guess. Now that I am looking at this, I wish I would have tied the gray shrug higher up on my waist. The dress is more baggy by nature, so leaving the shrug more baggy, just makes the whole outfit look frumpy. There's that word again! Ha, ha.
Yes, my little photo bomber was still around for these photos, since these were all shot on the same day. To dress this up, I put on the gray, sheer shrug. I added some jewelry with bling, a sparkly clutch and my flat, thong sandals with sparkles.
A simple black maxi like this could be a versatile piece to have in your wardrobe, but as I talked about last week finding a dress that fits well and looks good on you is worth paying a little extra for. I may try to make a few adjustments on this dress to make it more wearable. I feel that it is too long and I had some issues with the top being to loose and bulging in a few places.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this outfit. Leave me your ideas on how to style a maxi dress like this.
Thanks for stopping by the blog. Have a great day!
I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July. We spent Tuesday evening with some of the family and friends watching the fireworks and yesterday, I took my younger daughter out birthday shopping. My in-laws are coming into town this evening. It will be fun to see them. I am so very blessed to have married into a wonderful, caring family.
Today's Old Becomes New column, revolves around a thrifted, knee length, print dress. When I saw this dress a while back (Note: that is another reference that I have no remembrance of when I got this - ha, ha), I thought it would be a great piece to dress up or down. I like the fun print and the colors are not conducive to a specific season, so it can be worn all year round. However, as usual, I bought it and have never worn it. Once again, I pulled it out thinking either use it or lose it. I am not one to regularly dress up, yet I have this desire to have dresses in my closet, just in case. While my hubby does occasionally get us tickets for something fancier, most events these days are not formal occasions, thus the need or the desire to figure out how to wear something I would normally consider more dressed up in a more casual way.
Look 1 - Casual
My daughter was able to take these pics for me. Don't you love the color contrast between the green of the background and the colors of the dress? The dress is George brand, which seems to be sold both by Target and Walmart, although, as I said, I bought this at a thrift shop. This sleeveless, v-neck has a side zipper for easy on and off.
I did a little research on dress styles so I could give you better information. This is not truly an empire waist, which rests just below the breasts, but it is also not hitting at the natural waist, plus it is more fitted due to the cinch piece that the skirt attaches too. It is also, not an a-line skirt, so I am going to term this dress a princess dress with an empire waist. Ha, ha. It is fully lined, so no worries on see through issues. This also makes it perfect for year round wear. The lining helps if you work in office air conditioning and makes it great for wearing in the fall.
For this casual look I added my antler and bead necklace from Cabela's, a wooden bracelet, a thrifted straw bag, my MixIt hat and my Easy Spirit flat espadrilles.
Look 2 - Work Wear
This second look adds a bit of polish and structure, making the outfit perfect for the office. This gray jacket I got from my younger daughter because she had lost some weight and it is too big for her. The jacket is a simple knit, something like a heavier sweatshirt material. It is Laundry brand. I added the black beads, a large black tote and my black loafer heels.
Here are the two looks side by side.
What do you think, my faithful followers? Would you keep this dress? Would you style it a similar way, or do you have some other fun ideas. I love hearing from you all and I have gotten some very good advice and ideas, so I appreciate your input.
Hope you all have a great weekend! See you next week.
Be sure to check out my Instagram. Since I've gotten a smart phone, I am posting on there, more often. I also have some Pinterest boards as well, that I occasionally add pins to, so you can check that out as well. Always check back on your comments, because I love to respond to your great input.
Here we are again, taking another look at why maxi dresses are one of the funnest summer staples you can add to your closet. It really doesn't matter if you are short or tall, narrow or wide, there is a maxi dress out there that will look fabulous on you. My BFF back in NY mentioned that she has a hard time finding maxi dresses that are not too long. She is petite, and so often maxi dresses are sweeping the floor, even on people over 5'5". I have a few suggestions.
1. Search stores that have a regular petite's section.
Macy's, Penney's, Christopher & Banks and Talbots all cater to petites. You can also read this article by InStyle, which lists 35 other retailers that have petite offerings. If you are a plus size girl check out stores like Catherines, dressbarn or Eloquii. All of these stores have a nice selection of maxis and good return policies, so if you order it online, try it on and still don't like it you can send it back or just return it to a store nearby.
2. Find the one that fits.
Maxi dresses are not just about length. Find a dress that feels comfortable all over. In the heat of the summer, the last thing you want is to wear a dress that is pinching the love handles and gaping at the "girls". Try dresses on. I mean lots of dresses! Sure it is work to shop, but you only really need one or two good maxi dresses to get you through the summer. Shop online and try on at home, then you can take your time trying on and have the option of listening to music while drinking a tall glass of iced tea.
3. If the perfect maxi is too long, have it hemmed.
If you find the dress that fits perfectly, but don't like that it is dragging on the floor have it hemmed up, either by doing it yourself or taking it to a tailor or seamstress. A good seamstress won't charge that much for a hem.
4. Instead of a maxi, look for a midi or tea length dress.
If you are still concerned about length, try shopping for a mid length or tea length dress. These usually fall at mid-calf or just above the ankles. You will still get the coverage and the ease of a dress, but won't have to be fearful of tripping over the hem.
I hope that helps, for those of you who might be having issues with the length of many maxi dresses. I'll include a few shopping links at the end with a few petite and plus size maxi dress offerings.
As you will see, my maxi dress this week is shorter than the last two. I got this simple navy number from Christopher & Banks a few years ago. I need to add something here. When I say a few years ago, that means I can't remember how long ago I got it, but it has been hanging in my closet for a while. Ha, ha. It is scary how fast time goes by. My husband has a much better memory than me and he also remembers dates and years better than me. I'm often shaking my head thinking, "Wow! Has it already been that long?"
I couldn't resist throwing this black and white photo in. I love black and white pics and whenever my daughter posts black and whites from photo shoots, I am always drawn to them.
You can see this dress has a straight or columnar type skirt. It reminds me of something worn during the ancient Greek or Roman period.
I decided to dress this up, just a touch, with my silver accessories. The necklace is from Charming Charlie, while the bag and belt are thrifted. The gladiator type sandals are old and No Boundaries brand.
This maxi is so easy to throw on and I don't have to worry about shape wear, slips or hose. The material is a medium weight knit and is basically wrinkle free.
The beauty of a columnar type skirt is that you get coverage without adding bulk. If you are bigger on the bottom, like I am, usually sizing up helps keep the skirt from being too tight. However, trying things on is always the best way to find what fits and what doesn't. For another look at columnar type skirts, take a look at my Marvelous Maxis post from last summer on skirts. This one is specifically about straight skirts.
Here are a few more photos just for fun! I can't help but put a plug in for my talented daughters. If you live in the Toledo area and need a photographer, I would recommend Rebecca Trumbull Photography. She not only does my fashion photography, she shoots pets, weddings, high school seniors, commercial photography and manages social media accounts. My younger daughter, Rachel, not only produced my silly photo bomber, but she is an amazing make up artist. She is not currently a practicing MUA, but if you follow her on IG you can see what products she recommends.
And this is me at the end of the day! Ha, ha.
What did you think of this dress? I love to hear from you. I have learned so many new things from other bloggers and from all my wonderful followers who take the time to comment. I know life is busy, believe me! Your comments are appreciated and do help my blog to grow. I do not actively seek out collaborations or advertisers, just because I am very busy, so I rely on my followers to let others know about my blog. Your input helps me to become a better blogger.
I've included a few shopping links, just for fun. These are affiliate links. If you click on a link, I get a few cents. If you purchase something through one of the links on my sight, I get a little commission. All opinions are my own.
I recently acquired a pair of wide leg crop pants thinking they would be a good addition to my summer wardrobe. I have never been a big fan of wide leg crop pants. I feel that they make me look short and stubby. However, as a fashion blogger I am trying to have an open mind and try things that I wouldn't necessarily wear. That is precisely what this column is for. I found these on the clearance rack at Kohl's and figured since I didn't have to pay full price it was a good time to try this trend.
I wore this outfit to work, so the pants were a bit wrinkly by the time I took these pics later in the afternoon. Right away, seeing this outfit, I am thinking these pants are too big. While they feel incredibly comfortable, the pieces I combined them with for this outfit just aren't working for me. I like the color combination, olive with pink and blush, but I'm looking rather, frumpy, as my hubby would say.
I wore my blush SO flats to go with the sweater and tee. Maybe heels would have been a better choice. What do you think?
You've seen this waterfall cardigan on the blog before. You can see that post here. I love this thrifted sweater. It is light weight and I can wear it with so many outfits. The embellished tee is from Christopher and Banks from a number of years ago.
I also wore my stained glass necklace as I thought the colors went well with the top.
Here is a shot without the sweater. Once again, I feel like everything about the outfit is wrong. Perhaps a tighter fitting top with heels or a cropped jacket instead of the sweater, or maybe flip flops and a tank top would be better. The other thing I am feeling is that the pants are not cropped in the right place. It almost seems to me they should be just a tad shorter.
How do you wear wide leg crop pants? Or do you not wear them? I'm going to try these a few other ways before I totally give up on them. If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them.
I hope you all have a lovely weekend. Thanks for following along on the blog. See you next week.
If you like wide leg crop pants, here are a few shopping links. These are affiliate links. All opinions are my own.
I wasn't intending to take last week off from the blog, but that is the way things turned out. On Monday we left for Indiana to meet my husband's Aunt and Uncle from Wisconsin. We have been trying to meet up for several years now and it finally worked out. We met in a small Amish town called Shipshewana. This little town is known for its flea market which runs through the summer and into October. During the warm weeks of summer this peaceful Amish community turns into a busy metropolis with mobs of people, cars and the familiar black buggies.
We spent two nights in our pop up and discovered that it leaks. Ha, ha. Of course our luck continues as it rained every day we were gone! What is it with the rain lately? Is it rainy in your part of the country? This spring and now summer we seem to be having more days of rain and clouds than days of sun. However, even with the rain, we had a great time. Our days were spent shopping and eating and our evenings spent in our relatives' lovely motor home playing cards.
This week's outfit features a maxi dress that I bought a few season's ago at Kohl's. I have never worn it! I love the colors, the empire waist and the easy, comfort that this dress allows, but for some reason, I just don't seem to reach for it. Once again, I decided to feature it on the blog as a way to style it and give me ideas as to how to wear it.
The weather has been unusually indecisive this summer so I knew the sleeveless top may not be warm enough for certain situations, whether, just the cooler temps or air conditioning, so I added a dark wash chambray button up.
I tied the shirt to give it a casual flavor. You can also see I chose a blue metal and bead cross, and a red bracelet for my jewelry.
I wore my Comfort Plus wedge slip on sandals. I've had these for a long time and got them at a thrift store. They are easy to get on and off and very comfortable.
I also thought it would be fun to add my MixIt straw hat and my oversized Sonoma tote bag for a casual, summer, beach vibe. This is an outfit I would wear to the beach. It would be easy to slip my sandals off so I could get my feet in the water. The large tote offers plenty of room for a book, sun screen, keys, sunglasses and a towel, while the hat offers additional sun protection.
The day we took these photos I had come to help my daughter with her packing. She, her hubby and their dog are officially in their new home. On this day I had my grandson with me, so here are a few of his photo bombing shots. Beatrice was happy to photobomb as well.
He's such a ham!!
I hope you enjoyed this post. Do you have maxi dresses in your closet? How do you like to wear them? As always I love to hear from you. Remember to check back on your comments, because I always try to respond to your input.
I've included a few shopping links, just to give you ideas of what is out there. If you click on a link, I get a few cents because these links are through an affiliate program. Believe me, I have not made enough to warrant them even sending me a check, so I won't be quitting my day job, but every click does help. Ha, ha. All opinions are my own.
My outfit inspiration comes from many places. Sometimes it is a picture in a magazine or catalogue. Once in a while it comes from something I see in a book, but many times it comes from other fashion bloggers. This month my inspiration is coming from Liz of With Wonder and Whimsy. Liz has been a fashion blogger for a number of years now and specializes in outfits and styles for plus size women. She is sweet, fun and very knowledgable about clothes, styles, fabrics and working with retailers. I had the honor of doing a collaboration with Liz in the spring of 2017 on the Pantone Color palette for that year. You can see that post here.
Liz has a whimsical, colorful approach to not only her outfits, but her life in general. This is a gal who is not afraid to wear pale pinks, purples and yellows, but she also knows when to take the color palette up a notch to make a statement. The post that inspired me for this month's Outfit Inspiration column is from June 1st and is called, Packing A Capsule Wardrobe for Summer Getaways. You can see her original post by clicking on the link.
I have never been a big fan of a capsule wardrobe, because I am a clothes horse and like to have options when I travel. However, I think it is an idea worth visiting so I thought I would give it a try for this post. I did not give too much thought ahead of time as to how I would put this together, but I chose four key pieces for my capsule wardrobe. At the end I will give you list of the extras I would throw in to make this a weekend worthy wardrobe.
Outfit 1 - Casual But Cute
White pants whether cropped at the ankles, capris or longer are always a must have travel piece in the summer. They are versatile, going from casual to dressy and can be worn with anything solid or print. I have styled these Christopher and Banks ankle pants on the blog before. Like Liz did in her post, I styled mine with a Simply Vera - Vera Wang floral top.
For this look, which would work well for perusing the shops in a cute little village and then having lunch or dinner with my husband, I chose simple accessories that draw on the colors in the blouse; blue heels, light pink clutch, silver bracelets and my new Marina Griffin necklace that I won in a drawing on Jodie's Touch of Style.
I couldn't believe how perfectly the necklace goes with the colors in the blouse. Unfortunately, the necklace does get a little lost in the print of the blouse, so I'll be choosing a solid top next time to show off the necklace. This is a very pretty piece that is well made. Be sure to check out Marina's Facebook page by clicking on the link above.
Outfit 2 - Dressy But Comfy
When packing for a getaway it is nice to include pieces that will not wrinkle easily, especially if you want to get more dressed up. I chose my LuLaRoe maxi skirt for the bottom piece. these maxis are made out of a silky, stretchy medium weight knit. They pack well and you don't need to wear a slip as the material is thick enough to keep light from showing through. Any skirt that has some give and is made from material that won't easily wrinkle will be a good choice for your get away wardrobe.
For the top I chose another comfortable piece made from a similar material as the skirt. This knit peplum top is Liz Claiborne from JC Penney.
This is such an easy top to wear. You just pull it on and go. there are no clasps or zippers or buttons. It's like wearing a tee shirt, but more dressy. As you can see I threw on a string of olive colored beads to go with the olive print in the skirt.
I was also doing a fair bit of print mixing in this outfit. This works well, because the print of the top is smaller than the print in the skirt and it coordinates with the black in the skirt.
Once again I kept my accessories simple with a little black clutch and a new pair of shoes I found on the DSW clearance rack. These may be my favorite black heels ever. I love the retro vibe and they are so easy to get on, as well as incredibly comfortable. Win, win! These are Aerosoles brand. They still have these in a number of sizes here.
Here are my two outfits side by side.
Now what would I add to these four pieces to make it the perfect weekend wardrobe?
1. One other shirt like a tank top that could be worn with either the pants or skirt.
2. A pair of flip flops or more casual sneakers.
3. A jacket or sweater that would go with either the pants or skirt. I think my dark wash, distressed cropped jean jacket would be perfect.
Add to those three things a swim suit, sunglasses and a good book to read and you'll have just what you need for a fun weekend away.
I hope you enjoyed this post. As always, I love to hear from you. What is something you can't live without when you travel? Leave me some love in the comments.
Last summer I did a series called Marvelous Maxis. In that series I focused on the maxi skirt, which is a wonderful year round staple in many women's closets. You can revisit those posts by clicking on the title of each: Pleasantly Pleated, Playing It Straight, Wearable White, and A+ A-lines, This year I wanted to revisit the maxi idea, but instead of skirts, take a long lean look at the maxi dress.
Today's featured dress is a new purchase from Nordstrom Rack. For Mother's Day my daughters gave me a few gift cards. They know how much I love to shop! When my hubby and I were on vacation we discovered a Nordstrom Rack near the hotel we were staying in and we stopped in to see what I could find. I found this fabulous floor length maxi dress with a country bohemian vibe.
What immediately caught my eye was the colorful eclectic pattern. When I pulled the dress off the rack, I fell in love with the silky light weight fabric, the ruffles on the sleeves and the crocheted details on the sleeves and bodice.
The waist falls at my natural waistline and for this post, I used one of my daughters fun belts to further accentuate the dress waistline.
The neckline is scooped with a tie detail. I chose to leave it tied, but you could wear it open as well for a little more casual, sexy look.
The bodice and the top half of the skirt are lined with an ivory slip type lining, so no need to wear a slip underneath this sheer colorful fabric.
With so much going on in the pattern of the dress, I kept my jewelry extremely simple. This is a plain velvet choker, but you could also do a string of pearls or beads or a few shorter gold or silver chains.
My daughter and I got to laughing, because in all the shots up until this point my purse was facing the wrong direction. Many bags you can carry either way, but some have details on one side and are more simple on the other side. This is the side I wanted to have showing, so we were amused when I finally realized it was facing the wrong direction. I went for my mustard yellow Elle tote, to bring out the yellow in the dress. That's the beauty of this dress. There are so many accessory options to choose from because of all the fabulous colors.
Due to the length of the dress, I opted for a wedge heel. These coppery slip on Croft and Barrow sandals were perfect.
I added the black and white photos because I am a big fan of black and white. It allows the eye to appreciate the textures and depths without the distraction of bold colors.
I am excited to have found this fun dress and it will be great piece for spring, summer and fall. The colors will adapt well to the seasonal changes of fall and I can make it warmer by adding tights or leggings underneath and jackets or sweaters on the top.
I've included a few shopping options, but there are a slew of maxi dress options on line and in the stores right now. If you have time, do a little looking. You might find something you like. This post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own.
This Old Becomes New column was put together to help me reach for those things in my closet that I have had for a while. The goal is to come up with an outfit that feels fresh, and modern, then decide if it is a piece I want to keep. Today I pulled out this brown tiered maxi skirt.
The goal of this outfit was ease and comfort. This St. John's Bay skirt from JC Penney is made of a medium weight knit, much like a heavier tee. It has four tiers. Sometimes a tiered skirt can add bulk, making our bottoms look bigger and heavier, but this fabric drapes really well and almost gives the appearance of long pleats.
My 3/4 length sleeve top is Dana Buchman, from Kohl's and is also older. What drew me to this silky tee were the spots and the neckline. I wish I would have straightened it out a bit for the pictures, but that's what I get for trying to rush. The neckline is a pleated v-neck and lays quite nicely, except for the big wrinkle in this pic! Ha, ha. The print is not really leopard and not really cheetah, but it has that same wild looking effect.
This is an old bag that I got at a thrift store. I love the sheen, which makes it great for dressing up an outfit. I also love the simple muted taupe and silvery tan color. You really could use a purse like this with any outfit. The brand is Tignanello. Most of their products seem to be sold through QVC or Macy's and are made of leather. The price points are higher than I would pay for a purse, thus thrift stores are a great place to find quality name brand pieces at much more affordable prices. You just have to be vigilant and visit your thrift establishments on a regular basis.
I've styled this pretty necklace on the blog before and always look for ways I can incorporate it into an outfit. I got this at H&M a number of years ago on the clearance rack and thought it was a unique and fun piece.
Once again, I chose my peep toe, perforated sandals to complete the outfit. I am really finding these Sonoma brand shoes versatile and comfortable. I actually made the effort to paint my toes before we took pictures, so they could get some sun. Ha, ha.
So what do you think? Do you like this type of skirt? I think a maxi skirt can be a versatile piece to wear in the summer. It gives you coverage, but also gives you a wealth of options for dressing up or dressing down. You could swap our the silky tee for a tank top and the heels for flip flops. You could also dress it up by throwing a cute black blazer or sweater over the top, then switching out the more casual sandals for a pair of black heels or black wedges. Add a cute sparkly clutch and your all ready for a date night.
I'd love to hear your feedback, so leave me some comments below.
I've included a few shopping links for you to peruse. These are affiliate links which means if you click on a link, I get a few cents and if you purchase a piece through one of these links, I get a small commission. All opinions are my own.
Still in the throes of trying to get caught up after vacation, I decided to finish off the month of May with a look at what is trending for Summer 2018. I'm picking the trends that I think are fun and interesting and won't be including things like transparent rain gear or outside the box sports gear. I like to include those trends that I think most women would find interesting, but if your into see through rain gear, by all means, go for it.
Color is one of my favorites, as you know by my seasonal Pantone series, and this summer is no exception to the color wheel. Everything from brights, like a Crayola crayon box, to pastels as soft and sugary as cotton candy, are gracing the racks and shelves of clothing retailers every where.
2. Feathers and Fringe
Embellishment on a clothing piece is a great way to add texture to an outfit. Often, these little details can take an outfit from ordinary to extraordinary. Check out these fun pieces.
3. Floral Dresses
The floral trend is here to stay and I am glad. Floral prints are pretty, feminine and everyone can wear them. Whether you like tiny prints or big and bold, there is a floral dress sure to suit any woman's taste.
4. Tropical Prints
If you can't go to the tropics, why not bring it to you? This year there are all sorts of fun tropical patterns, sure to make you feel whisked away to any number of magical places filled with swaying palm trees and moon lit beach walks.
If you think a clothing piece is too much, then choose a colorful bag. You still get the fun of the trend, without feeling like you are a walking add for a trip to Hawaii.
Checks and plaid are another pattern that seems to be sticking around through all seasons. Gingham is once again a summer staple, but so are other plaids.
These are just a few of the summer trends that will be showing up in the stores and probably on a number of blogs, including my own.
This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one of the pictures it will take you to the retailer that sells that particular piece. Your clicks earn me a few cents. If you purchase something through my blog, I get a little commission. All opinions are my own. I've tried to include a variety of pieces just to show you what is available, but there are lots of options out there. If you are like me, you may already have some of these trends in your closet.