Category Archives: style

style

ania styles: bell sleeves, you make my heart sing

March 16, 2017

top: bell sleeve silk blouse / jeans: paige hoxton high-rise skinny jeans

first things first, i am part hippie and i am re-embracing that.

i say re-embracing because i think for a while there in college i convinced myself that i had a preppy style amidst all my pals at school. even though st. louis is obviously not on the east coast, the style is much more fitted and chic than the west coast where i grew up. washington and colorado have a more casual, laid back style. there are more plaid shirts, nice jeans and a blouse, natural make-up, wavy hair kind of outfits. sometimes i wear my hole-y boyfriend jeans with a plaid shirt here in st. louis to run errands and i feel almost out of place amidst the puffy vests and monograms.

but let me say just one thing before i go on: that style is not bad. the reason i mimicked it in college is because i like it. and i still do at times! i just think if you boiled me down to one style, it’d be a bit more boho meets minimalist meets flowy meets floral. but all due respect to the houndstooth wearers of the world before i go on. i love your tight pony tails and tailored pants.

complete tangent as usual.

i think if i were to choose any style era, it’d be the 70s. i love bell bottoms, i love circle sunglasses, i love embroidered florals on white tops, i love flowy sleeves and long dresses.

but this can be a biiiiiit challenging when you have to dress for work everyday and your job is not “full-time hippie”. although if i were ever on the bachelor, maybe i’d make that my job title. 😉

i really want the clothes i wear to work to still feel like me. so i’ve been very intentional about only buying clothes that i can both wear to work and to things like dinner with friends. i don’t want to have “work tops” and “fun tops”.

fortunately i don’t have to dress up for work and i can wear jeans with blouses or sweaters. this top is exactly what i want more of: it’s nice and i love dressing up a little for work but at the end of the day, i would wear this in a heartbeat (and have) to little events with friends.

i am also letting myself spend more on things i really really love. this blouse was about $50 with a sale going on (which if you buy ANYTHING at ann taylor or the loft, just wait like .4 seconds for a sale because they have one going basically permanently). honestly that is more than i usually spend on tops. ever since my purge this summer though, i have been much more focused on buying things i absolutely am smitten with and sometimes that means spending a little more for that one buy. it’s so interesting though because since i’ve eliminated the random $80 target mistakes and don’t meander through the cosmetics aisle without purpose, that even though i’m spending more occasionally on an item, i still spend less overall. it’s the best.

long story short: quality over quantity but at the very least, love over impulse. because i still sometimes shop at h&m which i wouldn’t exactly call quality. but you have to ball on a budget so it’s a healthy balance.

one quick thing before i go is about those jeans. i bought them with my discount back when i worked at anthropologie this summer and they are like freaking butter. they make your legs look miles long and would be such a good investment buy if you’re in the market for black jeans!

oh and one more thing! i’m happy to say i have many more exciting posts on the horizon if you’re been wondering what the heck i have been doing. maybe no one noticed that i veered off my two-posts-a-week schedule but i feel inclined to explain (which is my tendency). i took a little hiatus from focusing on blogging while i figured out what i really want to write about here and prioritized some other passions as well.i am going to be deleting some of my categories and hone in on travel, design and style with a smattering of pieces of my heart that i blurt out every so often. 🙂 i will be posting here more often in the coming months so keep coming back!

and thank you as always for being patient with me as i figure this whole blogging thing out. i am always so thankful to have even one person read my post.

style

ania styles: the lnf

March 8, 2017

shoes: lucky emmy flats / skirt: j crew cord mini / tile: “lemon gem” store 😉

i want to start “showcasing” items in my closet that lasted through the great purge this summer and i will continuous buy over and over as i wear through them.

so here’s my thinking: maybe everyone need a lbd but what you reaaaally need is lnf.

little. nude. flats.

they’re the most easygoing shoe in my closet. comfy, easy to wear casually or dress up and the best part? they’re the PERFECT shoe when i think to myself “i wish i could just not wear shoes” because it looks like you’re not. they don’t really add or subtract from the outfit.

i wear them with flowy blouses, chunky sweaters as we go from fall to winter or winter to spring, denim, skirts, dresses…the list goes on! now that it’s spring, i am back to wearing them a couple of times a week. and by a couple, i mean close to 5 times a week because i really don’t have a lot of other spring shoe options. i will keep you in the loop as i buy two more pairs to rotate this summer but for now, these really just seal the deal every single time.

why just two more pairs of warm weather shoes? because i don’t need any more. i want a nice pair of sandals that i could also wear to work, a heeled something (can’t decide between a clog or some sort of heeled sandal) and these little flats. easy peasy. done and done. i am sick of shopping and shopping for more and more. so i set myself a number, spend my time and money on just what i want and then go back to paying attention to the things that deserve my attention more than the shoes in my closet. 🙂

oh, and this is the darling home store in tower grove that the tile floor above is in! if i could squeeze a store, i would squeeze this cutie.

 

p.s. has everyone listened to ed sheeran’s new album? oh goodness, i am in DEEP. i can’t seem to listen to anything but ed!

style

ania styles: sweaters to get us through

January 31, 2017

it’s february tomorrow!!! one step closer to spring!!! tonight i heard the birds chirping as i left work and i was so so so happy at the thought that spring could be closer than i think.

but reality check, ania: it’s still COLD COLD COLD. and will be for probably at least 6 more weeks. bah humbug.

silver lining? this is the best time to stock up on the sweaters you’ve been eyeing all season, waiting to go on sale. for the next couple of months, they’ll just drop lower and lower in price. the sizes are flying out the window on the good ones (i’ve missed a couple because i waited too long so don’t make my mistake) but since i am looking for one or two more for next winter as one or two of mine are on their last legs, i thought i’d just link all the ones i have been eyeing here for you all to take advantage of!!

stay snuggly and cozy. i’m sure there will be one day this summer that i will long for a winter day. (maybe) (probably not)

madewell long cardigan / free people v-neck sweater / bp ruffle hem pullover

cowl neck pullover / black mock neck sweater / madewell turtleneck sweater

madewell sweater coat (OBSESSED) / madewell fireside cardigan sweater

cream colorblock fringe cardigan sweater / woodside pullover sweater

old navy hi-lo cable-knit sweater / textured cardi-coat (wait this is so cute)

boxy stretch mohair jumper / roolee knit long cardigan

light pink knit turtleneck / copper crewneck loose sweater

ps stay tuned for a post i am excited to share thursday – tangible ways for you to be a boss lady! because if i hear that buzzword one more time without any actions associated to it, i’m going to scream.

style

ania styles: winter sweaters + summer skirts

January 17, 2017

skirt: old zara – similar here and here

turtleneck: old madewell – similar here and here

booties: jonak

this st. louis weather is so all over the place. last weekend i went on a run at 6 am (i know, miracle from above that that happened) and it was muggy and warm.

then it was ice raining three days later for the whole weekend.

and tomorrow it’s going to be 60 degrees again.

it makes me miss the warm, but crisp, days of fall. i love those months of hot summer that just eaaaaase into fall. as much as i try to convince myself otherwise to be trendy and all about the cold like every other blogger right now, i love the sun. so when i see a day about 50 on the forecast, i instantly google the first day of spring and get so excited for warmth. (ps it’s march 20th, if you were also wondering.)

A N Y W A Y S. yeesh. i can get so off-track when i talk about the weather! what a thrilling life. 23 going on 83, as i say.

i wanted to share some style changes i have been making to deal with the temperature changes. when it’s this weird 45ish degrees and it’s not necessarily cold but you also don’t want to look like spring starts tomorrow, it’s an awkward balancing act. so i thought i could pair some skirts i have that can look a bit more winter-y and voila – style is born!

right as fall was ending, my friend sonya took these gorg shots (the photographs, not me #imnotthatvain) in forest park for this style post and when i realized this weekend that i never posted them, i freaaaaked.

could i still post them, i thought. i mean, fall is OBVIOUSLY done. but then it struck me: this outfit can work for fall into winter (which is what i had planned for) but also on the other end out of winter!

this turtleneck was a steal at the end of last winter at madewell. this time of the year is both the best and the worst for shopping. it’s the best because if you find something you like on sale, it’s most likely ridiculously marked down. buuuuut the new arrivals are kind of all over the place so walking into stores feels super uninspiring. there’s nothing much because they don’t really want more winter apparel with spring on its’ heels.

(how many times will i talk about spring in this post? tbd.)

so if you are feeling it, head to stores like madewell, free people, anthropologie and j crew every so often over the next six weeks and you might score a great gem. even though 70% of the time you’ll stomp out annoyed, the other 30% of the time you’ll find something like this black turtleneck that i wear prooooobably once a week. or a good home item tucked away in anthro like this one panel of a window drape i’ll have to show you all soon. or the floral finials i bought for EIGHT FREAKING DOLLARS that i found on the bottom shelf at anthro. they don’t fit my cheap ikea bar but i kept them because someday when i have nice drapes, they’ll fit and it’ll be glorious and i am already excited for that moment.

ANYWAYS.

at some point soon, there will be a post with my winter go-to’s. a black turtleneck like this one is very high on that list. it’s so versatile. i have tucked it into skirts, worn it with corduroy, slipped it under a jean or leather jacket, tucked it into high waisted jeans, worn it with dressy work pants and basically a trillion other combinations. if you showed me one that fit like this and it was cashmere, i’d probably buy it because of how frequently i wear this one.

also i wear so much black in the winter. SO much.

why?

1. i am not tan and it makes me not look as pale.

2. you will always look classy and put together in all black. literally always. even in workout clothes for pete’s sake.

3. it’s suuuuper flattering to wear a bloutfit (#coinedthat) at the time of the year when i am most likely working out the least.;)

paired with this zara a-line skirt i bought abroad and tights with black booties, it’s simple and does the trick. i can easily transition from work (although this skirt is a touch short for work but i have a couple that are longer that i have swapped out for it!) to dinner or drinks with a friend.

i love wearing skirts and dresses when it’s warm so i am always game to try and get some into my routine during the winter. it’s been on my list to buy 1-2 winter dresses but i haven’t had ANY luck! let me know if you spot something and i’ll be sure to try it out.

as always, thanks for reading! hopefully i inspired you to pair something you can’t wait to wear in spring with a wintery counterpart. we do what we can until those tulips come shooting up!

xo,

ae

style

ania’s january style picks

January 13, 2017

you guys, i am SO done with winter. i do this every year. i tell myself i can like winter. that i like being cozy and cuddling up on the weekends in my apartment and wearing snuggly sweaters. which, don’t get me wrong, i love all the above.

for like december and a bit of january.

and then january/february i start to get antsy for the sun and warmth. and all i want is to go on a run whenever i want and sip a drink after work on some outdoor patio.

anywayyyyysssss, i have been perusing the new arrivals sections of all my fav stores to keep myself sane as i see more stripes and light, blouse-y tops and sunglasses which means the more of that style clothing, the sooner there will be SUNSHIIIINEEEEE.

so here are some things i have been eyeing. i will do these picks every month as i see new styles and trends come out! i am doing this anyways so might as well share my findings with all of you. 😉

striped crew neck sweater

poppy drop earrings

topshop v-neck blouse

embroidered shirt

trumpet sleeve blouse

stripe slouchy shirt

printed blouse with frills

navy dress with bell sleeve

flowing top

embroidered poplin shirt

(obsessed with) bell-sleeve shirt in stripe

 

canNOT wait for spring. like real, flowers coming up, sun shining spring. and S U M M E R. we can make it!!!

 

style

ania styles: coats + scarves

January 3, 2017

coat: old by Mango – similar on sale here, here and here / scarf: old by zara

shoes: Jonak booties – from when i was trying to look french while living there 🙂

dress: old by mango – similar here and here

it is officially the season where my hands have begun to crack and bleed. yay for winter. #eyerollemoji

as much as i try to convince myself i like winter, i despise when it gets so cold you have to hustle to and fro with your head down in your scarf and your hands shoved deeeeeep into your pockets. i like the coziness and snow falling and christmastime, but can we just see the sun a liiiiiiittle more often?

for this style post, i am focusing on scarves and coats.

well, actually scarves is easy to sum up: zara and on sale at j crew.

when people ask me where i get a scarf, that is always the answer. but since working at free people, i have become obsessed with this one with fringe and this super soft one that makes me think of being swaddled in straight up velvet. they fly out of the store. other good stores to find reasonably priced scarves is the tbd department of nordstrom and urban outfitters! what i look for is something that goes with the color of coats i have and warm. pretty easy criteria.;)

i like to get either huge blanket scarves, which seems to be zara’s specialty or a long one like below that i can wrap around and around so my whole face stays warm.

when i lived in france, i learned to love winter jackets. in america, we tend to value warmth over style in the winter. the french were like “we can do both”. #ofcourseyoucan i have no problem with my big, down eddie bauer jacket (seriously though – if you need a puffy coat, grab this similar one!). i love that big fur hood and the fitted part at the end of the sleeve so that the cold doesn’t creep up in.

but the europeans didn’t wear puffy coats and they looked just fine and toasty. they have a way of looking weather appropriate and warm without looking like they just got outfitted by REI. it’s something i have been challenging myself to do this winter just for fun. my british girlfriends even had these amazing fur coats they found at thrift stores that they would wear out and about – oh my lanta, i was just one big heart eyes emoji. paired with skinny jeans and converse? gosh, they looked so casual freaking cool.

but anyways, back to winter coats in the good old us of a.

i thought this might be a good time to draw your attention to warm clothing since:

  1. it’s freezing outside
  2. it’s freezing outside
  3. refer to 1 & 2
  4. there’s tons of sales going on!

am i funny or nah?;)

things for you to keep in mind when you buy a nice winter coat: this is an investment. yes, it may be expensive. but let’s say winter is four months long and you wear it everyday. that’s 160ish days you’ll wear this jacket AND most likely it’ll last for next winter too. as i have been learning to spend my money on less but higher quality, coats is the very top of the list.

okay, maybe this will help – here is a list of questions i ask myself as i try on coats:

does this color look good on me or just the last girl that tried it on? will this color go with a lot of clothing/scarves i own? will i wear this coat next season? will it last til next season? how thick is the wool? are there pockets? how long is it/how long do i need it to be? will this be on better sale in a month? how long are the sleeves? can i pop the color? is there a hood? could i wear this to work/church? is it dry clean only?

also, you pretty people are in luck because january is a HUGE sale month for europe. so mango and zara, two of my go to’s for coats AND scarves, are having great sales! they run very true to size, in my experience and even though it might not be the j crew coat of my dreams quality, they’ve been lasting me three winters so i think that’s pretty good!

here are some that caught my eye from those two stores and others just to help narrow the search for you:)

zara: full pointed collar coat | coat with tassel detail | soft faux fur coat

mango: lapels wool coat | pockets wool coat

madewell: sherpa cocoon coat | city grid coat | monsieur coat | octave blazer coat | teatro swing coat

j crew: stadium cloth cocoon coat

i had a couple requests to do this post which made me so happy because ultimately i want to be writing what you would like to be reading so here you go! thanks for reading – i seriously love writing for you all. 🙂

and i will never turn my back on you… #thegirlsgotjokes

 

xx,

ae

style

ania styles: boss ladies in black leather

November 14, 2016

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jacket: old zara – similar here, here and here / skirt: urban outfitters

v-neck tee: madewell / superga tennis shoes: nordstrom

in 100% transparency with you all, i shot this look back in cali wayyyyy before the election buzz. but you can bet your bottom dollar i’m going to soak up this golden little opportunity to use it because of the perfect american flag wall. all my blogger blocks lined up for me on this one. and i don’t even hate it.

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i know the autumn days that feel more like summer than fall are slipping away. i am slowly (emphasis on slowly) accepting defeat against the missouri winter weather that will be here so darn soon and i have been mixing + matching summer and fall pieces to slowly ease myself in. (yes, it is still 85 back in cali. thank you for asking.)

this outfit is the perfect example of flirting the line between fall and winter. you can just add tights or high-waisted jeans to this combo and you’ve got yourself a little number that will have you feeling like q u i t e the boss lady but also will let you cling to crisp weather just a bit longer.

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i got this black leather jacket from a zara in lyon, france where i lived for a year and i LOVE it. but what you probably have already gathered from me in the few style posts i have done is that i am not exactly motorcycle chic.

what really sold me on this jacket was the way my friend vivi wore it with such ease. we traveled together a lot while we were living abroad and she brought this jacket on every trip we went on, pairing it with something different everytime. i was so interested in the versatility of something that i had (mistakenly) pinned as high maintenance. she wore this jacket with a white tee and black skinnies plus her converse to dinner in budapest and rocked it over a flannel in hallstat and it was all so effortlessly COOL.

i had pinned myself as the non-leather-jacket-wearing type but seeing her throw it on like any other jacket made me want to do the same. so i headed straight to zara when we got back from one of our trips and have loved having this piece in my closet.

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it’s the perfect jacket to wear out on the town and is an awesome layering piece, with a chunky sweater, a ribbed turtleneck or a big blanket scarf in my jacket’s near future. i got it for under $50 in france but the ones i linked above are all under $70 which is not too shabby for a really good imitation. gosh i miss having a zara on every corner.

also, can we just talk about how freakin’ boss black leather makes you feel? i think i borderline develop a swagger when i throw this on.

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the other pieces of this outfit are longtime favs. the whisper cotton tees at madewell are the gold standard for worn-in, comfy tees that only they have perfected. the denim skirt was a splurge that ended up being an awesome buy. i don’t particularly love jean shorts so having a jean skirt is the perfect way to counter that! i like layering it with sweaters and long cardigans + booties in the fall.

oh and these tennis shoes? you guys, don’t tell my good friends, the classic low-top white converse – but these are stiff competition for my fav white shoes. i like that they are so plain and just have a little bit of a more simple vibe. but of course i still have converse because they have a certain edge and casual-ness that will NEVER be beat. i have been wearing my supergas with dresses, free people-esque clothing and i just love them. also, they’re comfy! i’d say they are very comparable to converse.

hope you loved this style post! little lesson learned from me to you: never rule something out because you’re “not edgy enough”. if i can wear a black leather jacket, anyone can.

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vibed to yesterday’s song by hunter hayes while writing. throwback to the time i met him…and was taller than him. #storyofmylife

style

ania styles: blue jean baby, cali lady

October 28, 2016

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top: similar here at urban / jeans: anthropologie levi’s / bag: old zara – similar here at uo

rings: urban outfitters / shoes: birkenstocks from nordstrom

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one of the things on my (intentional shopping) list was a pair of comfy jeans. i have never owned a pair of jeans that i like to wear. honestly even just saying jeans makes me want to throw on a dress instead and wage war.

and then we got these levi’s at work and i wore them for 5 days straight.

at first, i didn’t want to try them on because the fabric is kinda stiff, like that good ol’ fashioned jean and not the legging-y jean material i am used to. but then e v e r y one at anthropologie was buying them so in an attempt to be able to sell to customers, i tried them on.

and the darn pants couldn’t get over my bum. lol.

after taking someone’s advice to size up because the top is a bit snug, like most high-waisted jeans, they fit like a glove.

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the waist is not really high waisted on me because of my height so it sits perfectly in place while i do photography, run errands or travel. people, i liked these jeans so much i CHOSE to wear them while flying instead of nike shorts. i mean, doesn’t that speak volumes?!

the detailing of the frayed edge at the bottom makes them unique and the wash is just this super great true blue. i seriously can’t get enough of them! now that i’ve worn them a few times, they’ve worn in all the right places like a trusty pair of jeans should – mainly in the hips and the knees which makes them even more comfy.

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i’ve paired them with everything: white slouchy tank + black blazer; sandals + button-down white shirt; graphic tee and converse. they just bring their a game every time.

this outfit also features two of my other favorite trends: tiny rings and mock top blouses.

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i bought the tiny rings in a set from urban outfitters and i wear at least two everytime i leave the house. i find myself loving delicate gold jewelry more than statement pieces lately so urban and madewell are my go-to’s for a little gem. (also this pack is SO affordable).

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oh and mock tops? i love the trend almost as much as i love saying mock top. they’re like for people who are a little afraid of going all the way with a turtleneck – just a small raised neckline that adds a lil extra somethin’ somethin’. they’re flattering and add different dimension to a top. if you’re in the market, i love this long sleeve peplum top, this lacy tank on sale at anthropologie and this waffle-knit sweater that’s not quiiiiiite a turtleneck in my book.

hope you all have a great weekend! i have some good posts planned for next week and the holiday months to come so i am excited to see how you like it!

xx, ae

 

vibed while writing to the sound of the rain falling because this dust bowl is in dire need of it because #droughtforever. *praise hands*

style

part iii: meet my alter ego, the intentional shopper

October 24, 2016

part iii of iii and i must say, this has been so fun for m to write out and reflect on! after the realization that i had been sucked into consumerism, the purge(s) and of course, reading seven by jen hatmaker (i will continue to recommend that book for forever and ever amen), what was  next for me?

i could have gone back to buying clothes, letting them sit in my closet and then giving them away. but that sounds like literally the last thing i want to do. but yet it happens year after year….

OR i could put in a solid 15 minutes of work with my little guide below and work on defining my style, forever eliminating the phrase “but i have nooottthhiiiiinngggg to wear!” from from my vocab. also, i eliminated going through hundreds of pages of clothing online or spending loads of time trying on clothes because i can figure out exactly what i will wear a lot after being in a store for a fraction of the time.

let’s do this. take about 15 minutes in your room with a piece of paper, a pencil (because you will inevitably want to erase and rework the following) and your closet/dresser/pile of clothes.

F I R S T take a look at the clothes that remain post purge and take note of three things: silhouette, style and color. sometimes it’s easier when you read an example so i’ll throw a couple of my own realizations in here for guidance.

silhouette: here’s an example for ya: one thing i want more of in my closet is dresses. they’re easy to wear, comfortable, you can move around (which for me = photography friendly) and are easily layered. i noticed from looking at the dresses i wear over an over that i like dresses that have no cinched waist or overall structure because i don’t really like tight clothing, especially on my stomach because it tends to make my acid reflux symptoms worse. actually, my doctor literally told me not to wear tight clothing which is why i love brands like free people and clothing at anthropologie and madewell so much! random fun fact for ya. #health so from that realization, i easily dismiss manyyyy dresses before i even try them on. there was even one on sale the other day at work for like $15 and i didn’t buy it because i knew the cinched waist would upset my stomach and i’d never reach for it. now that is what i call growth.

style: pinterest is great for determining what you want your style to look like but you also might figure it out by looking at your fav pieces. after seeing a lot of flowy tops, bell sleeves, button down shirts and slouchy sweaters, i could see that i tend towards more of a 70s meets boho meets jenna lyons style. i like stripes, dainty florals and solid colors. i like flare pants and i love lace. i have a thing for an all black and/or monochromatic look. i love crisp edges meets feminine flows. when i shop, i think of what i want my style to mimic and what i wear over and over in my closet. then, when i go to buy something, it’s easy for me to say to myself, “this necklace is super cute, but in reality, i don’t wear a ton of necklaces and i’d rather spend my money on something to wear everyday or put that towards the loafers i’m eyeing.” determining your style is kind of like trying to pin jello to a board with tacks so don’t feel like you need to put it in a box. it’ll develop but i think taking note of what you want it to look like will help you as you shop.

colors: for me, the biggest realization was the fact that i don’t look good in all colors. that’s not even meant to sound vain or something. i genuinely didn’t realize that i didn’t look good in some colors and that’s why i never wore those pieces i was soon getting rid of. once i had that lightbulb moment, i was able to eliminate items before even trying them on while shopping. case in point: my friend ashley tried on this gorgeous bell sleeved (DING DING DING WE HAVE A WINNER) dark green top from anthro. i was like omg i neeeeeed. and then i realized, BEFORE trying it on, that i actually don’t have anything that color in my closet and that ashley is lighter skinned and brunette thus looks s t u n n i n g in that perfect fall green. but i do not. i started looking at fashion bloggers with similar skin tones as me and noticing what they look good in and looking at my own closet. i like denim, white, cream, gray, black, chestnut brown and blush recently because they also like me! take the time to look at the common colors in your closet and recognize which items are the most complimented when you wear them to figure out what colors/patterns you should keep an eye out for.

S E C O N D make a simple pie chart to figure out where most of your time is spent so as to spend your money accordingly. my mom and i literally talk about these pie charts every time i make a purchase lately (#budget) and it’s been so helpful! i got the idea from caroline joy’s worksheets. simply make a circle and construct pie pieces to represent your week’s activities. for example, i have a large, 40 hour pie slice devoted to ‘work’, a medium-ish sized slice devoted to ‘casual/running errands’ and a smaller slice for ‘church, events (weddings, going out, etc.)’. so most of my purchases should be for work clothing. however, the nice thing is that i am now looking for tops and shoes that could be worn both to work and perhaps to dinner with a friend or on a date because of that realization. i don’t want all my clothing to be so work-y just because that’s where the majority of my time will be spent. likewise, my sister has noticed that her time has changed since becoming a mom to sweet xavier (note: change in circumstances!!), my mom spends most of her time at work in a garden nursery or doing things around town, and my other gal pal is a young mom to two plus works retail. all of us have very different pie charts of time so realistically we won’t be spending our money the same way! the advertisements will tell you that you NEED a lot of things but don’t let that fool ya. this has been the best realization for the conundrum of “i have nothing to wear” though because i am now filling gaps in my closet that i never actually put money towards (as much as i needed to). for example, if someone invited me out on the town, i have like two tops i can wear. same goes for being a wedding guest. even though these are small slices, i still need a couple in each and am keeping an eye out!

T H I R D easiest for last: make a list in your phone of what you need and reference it every time you make a purchase. mine (no, like this is literally a screenshot of a note i have in my phone) looks like this:

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the list did include black skinnies, flare jeans and nude sandals but since i am only spending money on these things and actually shopping for them and only them, they’re actually being removed from my list! gone are the days of accidental shopping sprees at target. hellooooo intentional shopper ania!

the reason we always say we have nothing to wear is because we are just merely shopping to shop. when i shop intentionally, i spend less time and get more satisfaction.

ps to this whole three post series: to have a list and shop intentionally doesn’t mean you need to spend a ton of money on the items – that’s the glory of this plan! it’s not about the money you spend, it’s about the way each item fits into your life and takes your time from endless hours surfing sales to pointedly shopping for what you need and putting your time where it should be – out adventuring through life! so don’t feel like each item needs to be expensive and saved up for – the list is just merely to help you stay away from the dollar section at target and yet another sports bra when you already have 4.;)

 

vibed to the sound of brooklyn nine-nine. it’s becoming my go-to blog-background-noise-while-writing show.

style

part ii: 6 steps to a successful closet purge

October 23, 2016

i am sick of moving but i am more so sick of moving things i don’t wear, want or need. since i knew that i wasn’t going to live at home for longer than probably 6 months, i was proactive and started going through paperwork, clothing, photos, books and anything else i would move to my new home – which is now known as st. louis.;)

i have a foolproof purging system and these are the components:

1 | be ready to try things on. the classic closet purge fail comes from the “oh, i don’t know – i probably just haven’t seen it on me recently” while tucking it back into your closet because you’re too lazy to try it on and realize, right then and there, that the top from high school just might not ever fit the same again. (which is ok!!!) try everything questionable on. have on proper undergarments because let’s be honest, no one ever got any good shopping done in a sports bra – same goes for your closet.

2 | stop feeling bad about the money wasted. this is a hard hump to get over but this is the way i see it – you basically have two options: 1. see the wasted money, save the item and continue to waste said money or 2. see the wasted money, donate/give away the item and turn that frown upside down.

3 | be realistic about your budget post purge. for example, i would love to get rid of all of my flats and start over. truly all i wear is nude flats and i don’t love the embellishment on my black ones. however, i don’t have the money right now to buy ALL the shoes i have on my list at once. so, be realistic about your budget. get rid of things you’re really not going to wear but keep some that you can keep until you have the moolah to get what you want.

4 | be realistic about future changes in circumstances. while i was doing these purges, i had to keep reminding myself that although i wanted to get rid of the two pencil skirts i bought my senior year of high school, i didn’t know what the dress code would be at my future job. if you are looking for a job, about to have a baby or really any big life event, perhaps get rid of some of those pieces but keep a couple in case future circumstances demand them. (mine didn’t –> pencil skirts are gone-o)

5 | be intentional about how you get rid of it. something that really struck me in seven by jen hatmaker was when she reflected on the way people typically give away clothing which is to bag it up and drop it off. with a clap of your hands, it’s gone and you can stop thinking about it. she took her purge to the next level and gave away her clothing in person. she, along with some of her friends also purging their closets, made basically a second-hand shop in one of their guest bedrooms and helped members of their community as needed. for me, i sent some clothes off to friends and tried to truly be “green” in the real sense of the word – simply making products last longer by passing them on. by doing something like these two examples or even just driving to a local womens’ shelter and seeing how little some people have, it’ll make you think before you buy something you don’t need down the road. try to give it away in person so you can see the effect and let that sink in.

6 | purge more than once. my mom and i agreed recently that you have to be consistent in purging your closet otherwise you’ll quickly get sucked back in to that more is more mindset. i think the idea of spring cleaning once a year is rubbish. if you want to actually be conscious of your spending, do it once a month. this way, those items you thought you were CERTAINLY going to wear again can be looked at again in a few weeks and labeled as a ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ it also allows you to reevaluate after seasons pass and circumstances change.

purging has been good not only to curb my spending but to focus my heart on what is actually important. one of my favorite instagrammers, @jennaskitchen, posted this quote on instagram the other day and i think it sums up perfectly what i have found from wearing some items over and over and settling with less for now. she posted this from the book love warrior:

“You will meet plenty of people who are pretty but haven’t yet learned how to be beautiful. They will have the right look for the times but they will not glow. Beautiful women glow. When you are with a beautiful women you might not notice her hair or skin or body or clothes, because you’ll be distracted by the way she makes you feel. She will be so full of beauty that you will feel some of it overflow onto you. You’ll feel warm and safe and curious around her. Her eyes will twinkle a little and she’ll look at you really closely, because beautiful wise women know that the quickest way to fill up with beauty is to soak in another human being. Women who are concerned with being pretty think about what they look LIKE, but women who are concerned with being beautiful think about what they’re looking AT.”

so last but not least, if you feel like you might have a little less for awhile as you rework your closet, that’s okay. i’ve noticed that people don’t notice. a post coming tomorrow on how to take these purges and use them to make the perfect closet for you. i call it “shopping intentionally” and it’s the best.

 

vibed to the sound of my freezer humming. i am literally sitting on the floor of my kitchen. #whatislife