Saturday, July 31, 2010

A detour to your new life

Dress: Trulli, Ann Taylor Loft;
Shoes: from Philippines, gift;
Bag: Fossil, thrifted.
How I've worn the dress: here.
Photos by me.
Listening to:

Wore this to pick up one of my final paychecks at work, and to lunch with some close friends. Because I was running errands, I wanted to be casual but look a little dressed up as well. Enter this dress. It's one of the older pieces in my closet, as I've had it for a couple years, and it's been extremely versatile for lots of occasions: parties, family reunions, casual days, etc. Before I had this "go-to" dress, this was the original dress I would go to whenever I didn't know what to wear.

The lighting at the farm park was really great today, so I took some more shots of the area:

A horseshoe stands guard over the blacksmith shed;
One of the farm sheds at dusk;
A massive oak and the farm park office;
The scarecrow in the master garden
is now dwarfed by the cornstalks.

Today Jeremiah and I are heading to Athens to drop off our rent check and bring our first load of stuff to the new apartment. It's all coming together now!

Yay for Saturdays,
signature1 by you.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Little house in the big woods

Dress: Arlene Airess, vintage, thrifted;
Belt: Ann Taylor Loft;
Shoes: Tayla platforms, Target.
Photos by me.

Sorry about the volume of photos, but I was so excited about this latest find that I had to try taking photos in all my favorite farm park locations. 

I wish I could claim that I've had this dress for 20 years, because it does look a bit like dresses I wore when I was little, and it looks especially like a certain one my mother made for me. But it does have a bit of a story behind it. I found this at the Salvation Army about two months ago. When I tried it on, I loved it, because it appealed to the seven-year-old in me who was obsessed with "Little House on the Prairie," because it looked exactly like something Laura would wear. I ultimately didn't get because I was afraid of many things: a) that the design infantilized me; b) and it was too costume-y I wouldn't have anywhere to wear it. I put it back on the rack and told myself that if it was there the next time I went on 50% Off Wednesday, I would get it, because it would mean thrift karma exists and that the dress was meant for me to have it. Silly, I know.

Well, guess what. It wasn't there the next time I went, nor the next four times. I moped, and considered myself stupid for believing in thrift karma. Over the next few weeks, I thought of the ways I could have worn it, if I had bought it. The Ingalls Wilder in me weeped.

And then this past Wednesday, I woke up early to be there for 50% Off Day and waited with a crowd as the doors opened. I made a beeline for the dresses, and within two minutes, I saw it. My prairie dress. How could it be? Did someone buy it and return it? Was it hiding in the children's section these last few weeks, only to be hung in its proper section on Wednesday of all days? I didn't care. We were reunited.

Taking it home was another story. As soon as Jeremiah saw it, he made a grimace. "Ehh, it's not my favorite. It's too much like a costume," he said. "How are you going to wear it?"

I have a few ways in my head to style it, but that's not the real point. I first rejected this dress because of how I thought others would perceive me in it, and then spent a few weeks moping about the lost find because it was something that I really liked. Much like everyone else in the style blogging community, I like having positive feedback from others for my sartorial decisions. But I don't want to become so dependent on it that I'm afraid to take my own risks.  

Maybe this dress does make me look like a little girl. Maybe it is too dated to wear. It's okay if my husband, sister or friends don't like it. I want to be confident and liberated enough to dress for myself. To wear this dress to the movies, to the grocery, to outdoor concerts and family reunions. To not deny the seven-year-old version of myself, but listen to her, and be happier that way.

Happy Friday,

signature1 by you.  

P.S. In case you were wondering, "On the Banks of Plum Creek" is my favorite "Little House" book. The Ingalls family lives inside a hill, which is so cool. And Laura gives bratty Nellie Oleson her comeuppance.

May I ask for your vote?

Dearest pals,
Tomorrow's the last day of Atlanta Magazine's "Head to Toe" Contest, and I'm currently tied for second place. It would mean the world to me if you could head on over and vote for me! If I win, it's a feature in an upcoming issue and a $250 gift card.

Be sure to check out the other ladies and gents in the contest,too. Thanks for your help!


signature1 by you.   

PS Outfit post coming up soon!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

You're everything a big bad wolf could want

Gingham top: thrifted, vintage;
Shorts: Abercrombie & Fitch, borrowed from Nik;
Sandals: Miss Trish of Capri;
Headband: from Philippines, gift;
Bag: Fossil, thrifted;
Leaf brooch: thrifted.
Photos by me.
Listening to: "Lil' Red Riding Hood," 
Sam the Sham & the Pharaohs.

I took these yesterday morning when the dew was still on the grass. The shoot didn't really go as planned: I went as early as I could at 9 am, but the lighting wasn't quite right on the little path by the farm (read: it was realllly bright) so I had to move to the closest shaded area I could find. I really like how the lighting turned out these photos.

This was one of those outfits that came together out of practicality: I didn't want to wear a dress because I knew I'd be moving a lot of things around during the day. This shirt has always reminded me of a picnic blanket, and with my newly-thrifted Fossil bag, it kind of adds to the image. I actually felt like a modern Little Red Riding Hood in this outfit.

The bag and the brooch are some of the spoils of the suspended ban. I've been finding a lot in accessories. The leaf brooch really appealed to me for some reason, maybe because I'm all about change right now.

Jeremiah and I are trying to infuse some fun in our routine before we really get to packing boxes. We went to Moe's and got some cheap tacos, went to the Dollar Store for some candy, and saw "Inception" last night and loved it. Christopher Nolan movies = the best.

I am really going to miss the farm park when we move.

signature1 by you. 

P.S. The Atlanta Magazine Head to Toe Contest is still going on until July 31st. It looks like right now I'm tied for 2nd/3rd (The scores for whatever reason are really low for everyone). If you could vote for me, I'd really appreciate it!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I am back

Dress, belt: Ann Taylor Loft;
Shoes: From Philippines, gift;
Sunglasses: thrifted;
Bag: Louis Vuitton, gift from Mom.
How I've worn the dress: here.

I'm back now, and hopefully here to stay. The last week has been beyond crazy and feels like it all happened a million years ago. To sum up, I finished up work at my current store, I'm still waiting to hear on my transfer to the Athens store, and Jeremiah and I are just now getting around to packing things up for the move this weekend. Kinda stressful, but exciting. 

After moving every summer for the last five years (starting when I was 18 for college), I am looking forward to settling down to a place that we want to live in for the next couple of years, and having a new, bigger apartment is going to be awesome. Jeremiah and I will both have our own closets, there will be a guest room that we can use as an office, and most importantly, we'll have our own washer/dryer. The place we live in now has a laundry room on site, but it's just not as easy carrying laundry out of the home to do every couple weeks. I am so excited about that change.
But packing up is so daunting -- I'm looking around our place now and wondering how we amassed so much in the last year of living here (answer: thrifting, probably). I hate packing things up, but I love unpacking and organizing the things I love, like clothes and pictures and books. There's something very therapeutic and invigorating about arranging favorite things just so. My muscle memory prevents me from being too thrilled though, knowing from last time just how much of a pain our behemoth couch, television and bed all were to move.

Anyways, my outfit yesterday was worn during some alone time while I thrifted. Now that I've suspended the ban, I've found very little in the clothing department but seem to keep finding good accessories. Funny how that now I'm looking and willing to spend, there isn't anything to be had. I'm hoping for more luck today because it's 50 percent off day at the Salvation Army. This outfit was basically a repeat of this one, but with different shoes. I originally had a sweater on over it, but after about five minutes I was afraid of collapsing from heatstroke, so I took it off. I have to admit I've been really inspired by "Mad Men" recently, and this outfit is basically an homage to Betty's third season outfit here. Hate what she was doing in the scene (meeting with Henry), but loved what she was wearing. I found the sunglasses yesterday for $2, and I love the shape of them! I feel pretty kicky in them. Speaking of the show, did you see the fourth season premiere, and what did you think? I think I was overwhelmed by the time jump, and the fact that SCDP had a new office. I've been reading lots of Television Without Pity threads about the series...

In other news, perhaps unsurprisingly, I've been craving change to my appearance lately. I've just been bored with my hair and its long length has been extremely hard to style. I don't know exactly what I want to do yet, whether it'll mean a haircut or new makeup or what. I usually get a haircut during transition periods in my life, and it might be time to change it up a little before we head to Athens. Got any suggestions?

signature1 by you.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The living among artifacts

Top: Unknown;
Skirt: Anthropologie, thrifted;
Shoes: from Philippines, gift.

Hey friends, sorry it's been so quiet around here this week. I've been wrapping things up with work (my last day is Monday), working on the transfer (find out next week) and getting ready to move, so I've been exhausted and overwhelmed the last few days. Once my work is over I'll have a little bit of time to myself, so I plan on getting back to blogging...
These photos are from the other day when Jeremiah and I took a little day trip to Fort Yargo State Park. The fort (the building in the photos) was built in the late 1790s by early Georgian settlers as a way to protect themselves from the Indian tribes in the area (though, looking at the wooden building, it'd have easily fallen prey to an errant torch or match, much less an attack). I had been to the park before when I was younger and my family was involved in Scouting and did day trips there, but I actually had never seen the fort before. It was really interesting to see the outdoor oven and the tools used for early American life. It was really weird to touch some of the items, like the oven and the fort, and realize their primary users are long dead...

Jeremiah and I had also planned on doing a tour of the Mayfield Dairy Ice Cream plant, which was only a couple miles from the area, but our written directions didn't work out and we went home and just bought some ice cream. I will see you one day, Mayfield cows.

This was an easy outfit for walking around the park on a hot day. This is the Anthro skirt I mentioned thrifting in an earlier post. As much as I like Anthro's offerings, this is the first item I've actually owned from the store, which is kind've hard to believe. I just never get around to shopping at the Lenox Square location, which needs to change. I like the color and the fact that its second layer makes it feel petticoat-ish. I think that for the time that I'm still living in this area, I'll put the shopping ban on hold, at least when it comes to thrifting.

I hope you all are having a great weekend, and have a Happy Friday! I've really missed you all and I cannot wait to get back to a regular blog schedule.

signature1 by you.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Spoils of the ban

Dress: Donna Ricco, vintage, thrifted;
Sandals: Tayla platforms, Target;
Belt: Ann Taylor Loft.
Photos by me.

I'll admit, I cheated and broke the ban last week. I bought this vintage dress and an Anthro skirt (my first ever item from the store) at the Salvation Army. I felt bad at first for not holding myself more accountable, for breaking willpower and spending money when I was not supposed to.

And then I came to this realization: I'll be moving in a couple of weeks, away from this town of thrift stores that are full of hidden and often-reasonably priced vintage pieces, to Athens, which has vintage stores, but they are often picked over and can be overpriced. 
So my question is this: do I discontinue the ban while I am still here, and pick up some items while I still can; or do I remain resolute with my goal while I move and just begin my (occasional) thrifting in Athens? Decisions, decisions.

I'll tell you what I love about this dress, though: it's season-less. It works well here in the midst of summer heat, but I can imagine it being layered with tights, boots and a sweater for the colder months. I like the dark colors, and I've noticed before that I seem to gravitate to combinations of red, white and blue.

What's been really drawing me into thrifting lately is that I am a sucker for the perfect fit. Whenever I try things on and they fit perfectly and have the right proportions, I feel the absolute need to have the item, even if its doppelganger already exists in my closet. I've been really lucky in being able to find a lot of these items recently. Maybe it's an urge I need to quell a bit, but I think I've finally come to terms with the way my body is shaped, and am comfortable in knowing how to finally style it.

Anyways, these are probably some of my favorite images on the blog. I went in the morning on Friday before work to take these after running errands, and I like how different the lighting was on that day.

I apologize for the lack of posting around here. I'm in the throes of transition: moving, tying up loose ends at work and hanging out with friends. I should have some free time coming up soon before the move so I'll be able to post more and comment more frequently on your blogs.

Love, and happy Monday,

signature1 by you.

Friday, July 16, 2010

"Mad Men" links

[Image via Vanity Fair]

Most of my in-real-life friends know about my little obsession with "Mad Men." I ask everyone I know if they watch so I can have conversations about it all the time. I read Television Without Pity's forums for hours, and yeah, I follow the characters on twitter in case some spoilers spill out.

So for those of you who are fans, I've compiled some of my favorite MM facts and fun, old and new, here. It's enough to while away an afternoon and get ready for Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce (!):

- Check out this cast and crew rendition of "Bye Bye Birdie." Seeing January Jones and Jon Hamm goof off together is totally worth it.
- Tom and Lorenzo have analyzed the outfits of our favorite leading ladies of the show. They've been able to pick out character trend and moods just from what they wear. This is totally worth all your time.
- Did you know that Roger and Mona Sterling are married in real life? That rocks my world.
- Roger Sterling's best one-liners.
- Don Draper's guide to women, via SNL. Classic.
- Jezebel's 15 feminist moments from "Mad Men." Love Bobbie Barrett's advice to Peggy on being a woman. 
- Feministing does a retrospective of Season Three.
- There will be "Mad Men" dolls. Looks like I need to get my Scarlett O'Hara doll a new friend in the form of Don Draper...
- This Season 3 promo is still seductive just by itself. Love the music they used for it.
- Bruce Handy of "Vanity Fair" did an amazing article on the show last year. Also check out the Q&As with January Jones, Vincent Kartheiser, Jon Hamm, John Slattery and the costume designer Janie Bryant.
- Collectors Weekly interview with Scott Buckwald, propmaster for the show. Learn more about some of the props, including some of the hard to find pieces, like the Sara Lee cake box from Season One.
- What would Joan Holloway do?
- And finally, I'm convinced this is the best scene from the entire series (the "Carousel" pitch, Season 1). It still makes me ache.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The doppelganger of Wednesday Addams

Dress: LOFT;
Tights: Anne Klein, TJ Maxx;
Shoes: Clarks (read my review/love letter here).
How I've worn the dress: here.

I will be honest: I think this is one of the most boring outfits I've ever posted to the blog. No bells, no whistles, no color, no deviation whatsoever. However, there was a reason for it on Wednesday: I had to finally tell my manager that I needed to transfer my position because of the move. I had no idea what to expect or how they would react, so I needed to feel formidable, like a stone wall, to feel like I could handle whatever came my way. I wanted to look like the perfect employee.

It turns out it went okay -- better than I thought it would go. She was understanding, and we filled out some paperwork and HR updated me some more on what would happen. I have to hear back from the Athens store to see if they have any positions open for me to transfer to. It's a little scary, throwing a line out there without knowing if I'll be pulled in, but it was a huge weight off my shoulders to talk to my manager about it today.

Anyways. You'd be surprised how durable these clothes are and how often I wear them. Actually, if you knew how much I really wear this dress to work, you'd probably be grossed out that I don't dry clean as often as I should. The dress has a great design and holds it shape very well (no wrinkles!), and the pockets are a huge asset, because it allows me to a) secretly text, b) hide little snacks to munch on and c) carry my little notebook of blog outfit ideas. Tights are usually absurd during summer in Georgia, but when it's freezing at work, they help. The shoes are still super comfortable and I no longer have any blisters or aches when I come home, so I highly recommend this particular pair for longtime standing/walking.

Wearing so much black does make me feel blah because I'm such a pattern-color person. I have to pretend that it's cool, and that I'm secretly a grownup Wednesday Addams, saying deadpan lines to Pugsley and coming up with macabre experiments to try with Cousin It. I used to love the "Addams Family" (both the animated and live-action versions) and still know all the verses to the opening credits (thank you, fifth grade musical).

Anyways, I'd like to know: what outfits do you wear to make yourself feel strong and capable at work?

Happy Thursday!

signature1 by you.
Related Posts with Thumbnails