please make sure you’re sitting down because these will knock ya down. these two were so in love that i couldn’t stop smiling and snapping! also they are so photogenic that i literally didn’t have to delete almost any photos. never hurts. 😉
enjoy phil and jules! congratulations you two — cheers to you!
told myself i was going to post here twice a week starting last week. didn’t last week. 0/1.
so starting fresh again this week! i have gotten so much better at giving myself grace and space while also holding myself accountable. does that make sense? it does to me. 🙂
okay you guys this is going to get real real, real quick. so i texted my friend sonya, who has supported me blogging from probably before day 1 if that’s possible, to do a little photo shoot for blog content and outfit styling. she said yes because she’s an angel and i got so excited to share style posts again with you all.
and then i came home from work to style outfits before meeting up with her and realized i had nothing “new” to share. i literally have bought so little clothes-wise lately that i was like wait…i didn’t exactly think this through…
i truly have gone from constantly comparing my clothes, being jealous and shopping all the time to “keep up” to being so content and grateful with what i have. i buy like maybe 1-2 items a month (sometimes 0!) and have really honed in on the overall goal of curating a well-styled, well-loved closet that comes with time and intention.
i have NEVER in my LIFE been so picky about things. if it doesn’t fit well, wear well or make me feel good, it’s out. like straight up i am almost annoyed with myself with how picky i have become! i think about if it’s wearable with multiple outfits, in multiple scenarios and really, at the end of the day, if it makes ME feel good.
so for these next couple of style posts, i am honing in on the well-loved pieces of my closet that i have been just going back to time and again. these are the pieces that remind me that’s it’s good and important to be picky and invest sometimes in things you love. even if it means you wear the same things over and over until you find something new. more on that next week…
this week’s outfit is for when you want to nail that casual weekend chic. which is a part of my closet i’ve told you i’m working on. and it’s been making me so happy on the weekends to traipse around town looking cute, but feeling comfy!
starting with these shoes, they are my all-time fav classic white tennis shoes. my mom heard about them and the instant i saw them, i loved them. they are just the quintessential white shoes. nothing crazy, no weird logos or colors, and they’re comfy! i like them more than white converse which borderline feels taboo to say. anywho, they are worth every penny and even come in pink velvet! which is just so darn cute.
next up: the jean skirt. another investment buy. to spend $60 on a jean skirt on a college budget was not something i considered until i found this piece my sophomore year (yes, that’s how long it’s lasted! quality > quantity). i have this thing against jean shorts (a story for another time) so the idea of a jean skirt just really rang true with me. it goes with everything, i love shirts tucked in or left out, and then paired with a sweater? gahhh i had never paired these two before this very shoot and was REALLY into it. it’s kind of like that look on Pinterest that you’re like how do they look so casual and yet so cute…? well, this is my version: slowly finding those pieces and one fateful day match making them together. 🙂
which makes me feel like :
and then the sweater! i will say this a million times on this blog but i’ll say it again: the best time to buy sweaters is after sweater season. all my Madewell sweaters have been purchased post-winter. literally all of them. on sale. ba-boom.
you have to pretty consistently go into stores those weeks in jan/feb/march to find these deals, but when you do: it’s worth it. people are returning things they got for christmas or realized they never wore all winter and their loss will be your reward.
i loved the buttons on the side and although i typically don’t wear form fitting, crew neck sweaters (never have loved the way they look on me because i’m so tall!), i LOVED how this was like a looser, casual play on that sweater style. sign me upppp for loose clothing always and forever amen.
i hope writing these posts about the more capsule part of my wardrobe, those staples i use as my foundation for outfits, will be helpful as you build your own! the idea of an entire capsule closet kind of stresses me out (at the current moment) but i love the idea of having a really good foundation from which to work off of! and for me, white tennis shoes, a jean bottom other than pants and a casual sweater to wear over dresses/skirts are must-have’s.
happy to see you here always always always! truly this is the best part of my week most weeks, writing content for you all, and it means so much to me to have any singular person read or comment. <3
WELL HELLO THERE. long time, no see! wow i am genuinely so happy to be typing in this little box again. i probably shouldn’t have pulled out my laptop at this hour of the evening but i just couldn’t wait until my blogging time tomorrow.
yep, you heard that right: blogging. time.
okay so here’s the deal everyone. i had this mongo revelation a couple of weeks ago. but as you know, i like to chit the chat only once i have lived with something, whether a product or an idea, for a while so that i know it’s worth sharing.
and i am still sold on this little piece of wisdom He revealed to me.
so here’s a succinct little truth bomb:
if you change your thinking from “i don’t have time” to “i don’t make time,” your world will be r o c k e d.
let me give you two super quick examples, ok? just go with me here.
“i don’t have time to work out.” (says me) (says everyone ever)
funny thing is, this isn’t true. i have time to work out. there’s 24 hours of the day. if i want to work out for 45 minutes, that’s really doable. but if i don’t make the time, the time disappears. before i know it, i “just got home” but it’s 9 pm. and all i did was eat dinner. and browse my phone. and i’m dumbstruck thinking, wait how is it 9 pm?
2. “i don’t have time to blog.”
i love writing and it comes naturally to me. so to write blog posts doesn’t truly take much time. but the prepping, scheduling, taking photos, and just the mental space it takes can be daunting. so i wasn’t blogging. but again, i wasn’t making the time. i was just complaining i didn’t have the time. and week after week passed, with plenty of laying on my bed or lazy Saturday mornings, but no blogs up. hmmm…
so i just have stopped saying i don’t have time unless i TRULY don’t have time. WHICH SOMETIMES IS VALID. like if i have a meeting starting after one ends. in that gap, i don’t have the time.
but alas, there’s a quick thing i need to point out: i have also been training myself to say “i don’t want to make the time.”
this. is. different. than. i. don’t. have. the. time.
you’re probably like okay ania, cool your jets and take a lap. but seriously y’all (no i’m not from the south, i am just worked up right now) THIS MIND SHIFT WILL CHANGE YOU AND YOUR PRODUCTIVITY. truly.
now every time the words “i don’t have time” come stumbling out of my mouth, i realize it. and i think to myself, “do i really not have the time or am i just not making the time?”
the distinction is important for how you perceive your days which turn into months which turn into years which turn into your life. if you constantly say you don’t have time to read a book, you won’t read a book. if you say you don’t have time to work out, you won’t. if you say you don’t have time to call a friend, you’ll lose them.
you have to choose to make the time.
it’s been helping me hone in what i want to make time for.
i remember having a dad in one of the classes for my work say he gets up sometimes before 4 to work out and have some alone time. with multiple kids, he knows he needs that for his own wellbeing but also knows that unless he makes the time for it, it will not happen. now that is making the time.
if you train yourself to think that you don’t have time, it’s really limiting. but if you retrain yourself to think you have the choice to make the time or not, you’ll be limitless.
well, you’re limited to 24 hours. but that’s a whole lot of time. the same 24 Mother Teresa had. the same 24 Adele has. the same 24 is given to all of us but how we spend it is different.
i am reminding myself that it’s up to me to how i spend my days and really, how i spend my life. and i am making time for what is important instead of being smothered by the idea that i am unable to control my schedule.
let’s just get right to it: the changing of seasons is the hardest time to reroot myself from that more more more mindset. nyfw started and i saw so many fall trends i love and immediately the list began to build in my head.
sweaters. booties. boots. over the knee? what color? do i need more jeans? probably. black jeans…should i get a pair with holes in the knees? wait but i also need flannels. and new tennis shoes. also how do i work a new wallet into the equation? OH WOW HAWAII. should i get more swimmies? sunglasses? what do i wear to walk in? also velvet. ooooh a velvet dress. also skirts. a plaid skirt? that sounds necessary. i could use another coat. for fall. and winter. also a hat. like a cute knit hat. but also new leggings for running. speaking of, i could use new headphones.
i mean W H A T. this changing of season and the way we are marketed at is disturbing. we don’t need anything. truly. most of us have more than enough. it’s been my new year’s resolution to reroot and it becomes hardest at these times of transition where everyone has a “fall 2017 to buy list” and “the 5 boots you can’t live without.”
and i’m like yo. let’s slow it dowwnnnnnnn. thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes in the last few weeks due to natural disasters and we think we need 12 new sweaters for fall? it seems like two extremes to me. let’s look at all the bounty we already have and count our blessings instead, mixing and matching new combos in our closets.
this mentality of need vs. want is something i have REALLY been challenging myself on lately. it mainly stems from my tight budget with a couple of big trips (mainly Hawaii!!!) up ahead.
but honestly, it also comes a lot from my time abroad. i still think about how much more clothing i brought FOR NINE MONTHS than my host sister had…in totality. it was so clear to me how they spent their money: on experiences. and how clear it was how i, as an American, spent my money: on materials.
it’s really easy to look around and think a want is a need as we go from summer to fall. what i would challenge you to think about is that we already have SO much. yes, i would love these sunglasses, i had to return this sweater to pay for a boat trip in Hawaii and i really freaking would love to buy a new pair of skinny jeans.
but here’s the thing: i get to choose. i have enough money that i GET to choose how to spend it. i am not broke. that’s borderline insulting. i have a roof over my head and i have groceries in my fridge and occasionally i get to go on some crazy trip.
i am reminded everyday when i turn on the news and see those with nothing how privileged i am to be able to choose Hawaii over lunch at Chipotle, a deposit for a trip to the Holy Land next spring over a pair of Free People shoes. this choice is a privilege that many would dream of.
i think the instant i forget that i have a choice and i confuse my wants as needs is when i slip into a dangerous mindset that more is better and that i have less than everyone else.
when in reality, i have so much. and all i need.
this dress will soon be worn with my white Superga’s and i’ll throw a sweater thrown over it as the air becomes brisk. and today i mixed an old top with a pair of linen pants. and i will wear my jeans for oooonnneeeee more season before they head out the door. because what i’m realizing is that the more i take my identity from the top list of fall blouses I MUST HAVE this season, the more content i feel and less attached to my money.
i love shopping. i love styling outfits and changing trends and looking at what’s new every fashion week. i mean, that’s part of the reason i blog here! but it can become addictive. so i am just in a season of training my heart to see what i have. and if one day i have more flexibility in my budget, i’ll know when to stop, see the blessings present and give my money to those who need it.
and the final batch. these ones were taken on a random side hill that we stumbled upon via a kind cop who had almost given us a ticket when we tried to get photos on these sand dunes. he was like “hey, i have another spot in mind!” and brought us to this hill. god bless him and his artistic side. 😉
i hope you enjoyed these photos as much as i do. they have such a special place in my heart because this day was one of those that when i felt so completely and utterly myself. it was so fulfilling in every way.
i hope you get a day as carefree and beautiful as this every once in awhile. it’s good for me to just create beautiful things for the sake of creating beautiful things.
these beach shots made me emotional. the colors and the happiness i can feel through them when i think of us running around like crazy kids in these long dresses, tripping over ourselves and snapping shots as fast as we could, makes me smile every time. the whimsy of it all and the carefree nature of the shoot is exactly the perfect set-up. no pressure; just creating and dreaming.
the movement of the skirt on this dress literally just ruined me. i mean COME ON. can you even deal with the flowyness?!?!?!?!
part iii and iv coming at you the next two days! felt like i should just get these all out there as quickly as possible because this kind of beauty doesn’t deserve to be stuck on my computer where only i can swoon over it.
i still think about the day gina and i met up in carmel, ca to create something beautiful together. that day filled my cup so much that when i think back to running up sand dunes, getting covered in tulle on the beach and becoming good good good friends in one afternoon in chats in-between shots, i feel instantly full again.
gina is a beauty, inside and out. there are so many beautiful photos and do them each justice, i have separated them by dress and location. i cannot WAIT until gina and i meet up again to create Beauty. i am convinced our world needs more of that right now; people joining together to create something magical together.
thank you to gina lady for being my model, coaching me through my new camera and doing anything i ask of her, including (but not limited to) lying to a cop that she was actually taking my wedding photos. you’re the real MVP, g-unit!
enjoy part i of this shoot. 🙂
gina, you are gold to me! and california, you have my heart.
well, hello september! this time of the year is second only to the beginning of summer. the crisp mornings, the start of school and…the inability to figure out what to wear when it’s 50 degrees in the morning but 80 in the afternoon.
dressing in september is a lot of mixing summer and fall pieces. pairing an off-the-shoulder shirt like this one i LOVE from Anthropologie (it also comes in black and red!) with linen pants or jeans and booties transitions it from summer to fall.
a short sleeve top with a slouchy cardi and shorts. sandals and a long dress with a wide-brimmed hat. a short dress with a long sweater and booties. the list doesn’t end!
this time of the year is perfect for trying to make even more outfits out of what you already have! layer and try new combos before you feel like you have to hurry out and buy something new. some of my fav early fall combos is flannels with white dresses, chunky sweaters with shorts skirts and long sleeve blouses with with shorts.
there’s something so wonderful about the weather before it gets chilly — does anyone else just feel so hopeful and excited in months like May and September?! something about the changing of seasons!
i am excited to stick around st. louis in september (also defffff need to save all the dollars for hawaii, ya know?!) because it’s one of the most wonderful months to live in the midwest. i struggle in the winter so i am soaking in e.v.e.r.y. minute of good weather! what are you most excited about for the fall?!