Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Maroon T-Shirt, Grey Jeans and Tan Oxfords

Hi guys, I'm wearing another wine colored shirt today. What a great color for fall. I actually have three different kinds of maroon tops now. 

I'm going to take the next week off from blogging, and then when I come back I'll have my fall capsule wardrobe finalized. Woo hoo! 

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Flowy Top, Flared Jeans, Ankle Boots

Here's my '70s outfit:

I got these flared jeans from Madewell, and I love that they are dark and have no distressing. I wouldn't mind a pair with some fading, but I haven't found any with the right amount for me. Many that I see have extreme fading, whiskering, and distressing, and that's not what I'm looking for right now.

Flared jeans are rumored to make people's legs look really long, and yeah, I'd say it's working:

Are you wearing any '70s clothes this fall? It's kind of fun!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Saturday, Sunday and Monday Outfits, September 2015

Hi everybody! Did you do anything fun over the weekend? We went to a fun sporting event: my 4-year old daughter scored four goals at her first soccer game of the season. It was so fun to watch her play! On Sunday, my sister and I celebrated our September birthdays with brunch and a leisurely shopping trip to a big fabric store. It was fantastic to shop with my sister and without our kids! Once in a while, it's nice to just be with an adult (especially when doing something that's boring for kids but fun for me). 

Black and white t-shirt, black skinny jeans and moccasins.

Grey Everlane t-shirt, navy cords and tan oxfords.

Clay tank, jean jacket, grey jeans and wallabys.

For the month of September, I'm still using my summer wardrobe plus I'm adding in fall pieces as needed. I've sort of been wearing whatever I want, and getting out extra shoes from storage, and it feels really fun! It will also be fun to put together a real wardrobe for the rest of fall. 

It's admittedly fun to have a lot of options, but are you familiar with the concept of decision fatigue? The idea is that every decision we make uses up part of our decision-making allotted energy for the day. If I have to use that energy first thing in the morning, I'll have less throughout the day and I might make worse decisions later. 

So having a great ready-made capsule wardrobe minimizes the decisions needed to get dressed and I can save that energy for later, when I have to decide to take care of a chore now instead of saving it for tomorrow, or choose to make a healthier snack instead of eating chips and queso. I might not have my fall wardrobe finalized by October 1st, but it will be ready early in October. 

What do you think about taking a break from capsuling once in a while? It's kind of fun to just do whatever I want, and interesting to see what I want to wear without having limits. I have noticed that I've been spending more time trying clothes on and changing to a different outfit. I don't like spending more time getting dressed, so it will be nice to have a capsule in place again. 

What's really fun is wearing whatever shoes I want! I'm going to think about only limiting my clothes and keeping all my shoes out. I haven't had a problem with changing shoes while I'm getting dressed. 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

My Search for Brown Oxfords

This fall, I suddenly felt like having some preppy oxford shoes. I wanted a pair of brown lace-ups, and after some online research, I decided to try these three pairs:


These are all from Pikolinos. I love the way they look, and I am having a great experience with my blue slip-on pair from that company. 

The top pair are called Royal and they look exactly like what I pictured when I decided that I wanted some oxfords. But the leather is pretty stiff and they hurt the backs of my ankles. I think they would break in fine, but I was disappointed after the instant comfort of my blue pair - I was hoping for the same soft leather. Also, their stiffness meant that it was harder to put them on and off. I had to loosen all the laces to get my feet in, then tighten them back up. I'm betting they would have loosened up a bit over time, but I want them to be perfect pretty much now.

The middle pair are the Calabria, and they are too soft! Holy cow, do I love these shoes. They look so cute, I love the metallic leather (and they come in other really nice non-metallic colors as well). The leather is so soft and comfy, I couldn't wait to try them on. But the super-soft, thin leather combined with the way they fit (tight across the tops of your feet) means that your toes are totally outlined through the leather. I could clearly see my toenails pressing against the top of the shoe, and I don't think it would have taken that long to wear holes right through the tops. Darn! Sadly, they went back.

The bottom pair are the Santorinis. This is the pair I kept. These are very soft, but the shoes are structured enough and designed so that your toes aren't pressing against the tops of the shoes. I love them! I wish they would have made them in the darker brown color of the top pair, but I like this sand color, too. This pair is pretty easy to put on and off. They don't lace up quite as high as the Royals, and the leather is more flexible.

Here's how they look on: 

Striped t-shirt, boyfriend jeans, and tan oxfords.

What do you think? Do you ever hunt for the right pair of shoes like I do? 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Navy Jersey Dress, Jean Jacket and Blue Oxfords

Here's another simple layered look. It's a sleeveless jersey dress, perfect for a sunny day. Then as it cooled off, I just added my jean jacket to stay comfortable. And of course I wore my current favorite shoes, my blue slip-on oxfords. 

I've been trying to find my perfect brown lace-up oxfords, and I think I've succeeded. I'll share more about my search tomorrow. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Tuesday and Wednesday

It's time for layers! The mornings and evenings are getting cool enough to need long sleeves. A chambray shirt is light to carry but adds just enough warmth for our current temperatures. 

Blue sweatshirt (I made it), jean skirt from Boden, and Sam Edelman espadrilles
(Some links are affiliate links. If I can find the exact item, I link to it, and some are similar items.)

This month, I'm still using my summer clothes, plus I'm adding some of my old fall clothes from storage, and I'm buying some new pieces for this fall and winter. I think I'll have a fall capsule ready for October 1st, but it might take me a little longer to nail it down. That's okay with me. I've been doing this for a year now, and I feel ready to stray from my original rules a bit. I will aim for about 40 items, and see what I end up with. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens when I put together a capsule wardrobe with a less structured approach.   

Monday, September 21, 2015

Weekend Outfits from September 2015

How was your weekend? We went to a fun kid's birthday party at an indoor ziplining place. Did you know little kids can zipline? I didn't. Bodhi thought he was too young, though they allowed kids age 2.5 and older. Violet had a blast and didn't want to quit to go eat cake.

Black and white striped tee, chambray skirt, and Naot sandals. 

Red shirt, grey boyfriend jeans, and blue Converse.

Black tee, ikat skirt, and silver sandals. 

I'm feeling unsentimental and over-cluttered, so I'm hoping to take advantage of those feelings and get rid of some stuff this week. What are you up to?

Friday, September 18, 2015

Live Free Tee, Boyfriend Jeans, White Converse

So today it was only about 70 degrees out. I thought I might be able to wear a sweater this morning, but it was still too warm. I don't want to wish away the warm weather, but I was excited about the idea of sweater weather.

It was a great day for playing outside with the neighbor kids (and chatting with the moms). As dinner time rolled around, a few neighbors complained that they were cold! I thought it felt good, but they could have put on sweaters. 

I hope you have a great weekend! 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Grey T-Shirt, Black A-Line Skirt and Blue Oxfords

Hey! Today I wore a simple t-shirt and skirt. These Pikolinos shoes are made of super-soft leather and they were perfectly comfortable as soon as I tried them on. They are working great for me.

This outfit would not be good for, say, crawling around with the kids at a playdate or something. The neckline on this shirt can become too revealing with that kind of movement, and of course a skirt calls for less rambunctious activity. So I took the kids for a treat (in their minds, anyway): a fast food lunch and then let them play in the kids' area while I sat calmly and watched. Tomorrow, when the high temp is expected to be just 70 degrees, I will wear play clothes and we will hit up a playground. 

I'm still working on my fall wardrobe. Here's a skirt that I tried but won't be keeping:

It's from J. Crew Factory. First, here are the problems: 

1. The fabric is wool/poly/viscose rayon and as soon as I put it on, my skin felt irritated. I'm pretty sensitive to some types of wool (and maybe "poly"). 

2. I think I would need to go down a size. It's a little wide on me. 

And here are the great things about it:

1. The color. Yep, it's grey, but up close, it has flecks of other colors woven in. 

2. The length and shape are great. I can imagine lots of cute outfits involving this skirt.

3. Great pockets. Have you ever experienced pockets that were too shallow, so stuff would just fall out? I have a coat like that, and I'm always having to worry about losing my gloves. Anyway, these pockets are the right shape and depth. 

So, I'm sending it back, but I looked at its construction and measured it so I can try to copy it in a me-compatible fabric. It will be a challenge to line it and put in nice pockets, but I'll give it a try. If it has to be unlined or have no pockets, so be it. I think the shape will be a great addition to my fall and winter wardrobe, so I want to make sure I sew it, even if that means sacrificing a lining and/or pockets. Sometimes just finishing the project is better than doing everything perfectly.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Navy Tee, Grey Skirt and Silver Sandals

Hi guys, I'm still searching for some great flared, higher waisted jeans. If you have suggestions, let me know! I ordered a pair from American Eagle and got them today, and they have too-obvious whisker fading. Why is that still happening? I don't like whiskering. 

Navy tee, grey skirt, and silver sandals. 

This is such a great time of the year! It's still often summery during the day, but it cools off so nicely at night. We're sleeping with the windows open and it feels very refreshing.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Weekend Outfits + Tuesday

Hello, friends. I finally figured out how to scan this photo and get it here. Phew. Over the weekend, we got to see Thomas the Tank Engine and ride on a train pulled by Thomas. It was hot and crowded, but still fun. Here we are with Sir Topham Hatt:

I wore my brown Live Free t-shirt, boyfriend jeans, and blue Converse. Sir Topham Hatt is sporting one of fall's hot colors: mustard yellow! 

Sunday I wore my navy tee from Boden, grey boyfriend jeans, and blue slip-on oxfords from Pikolinos.

And today I wore the same t-shirt in a different color: red-orange. I added my brown shorts and white Converse from my summer capsule. 

I'm still figuring out my fall wardrobe. I think it will have a lot of neutrals, navy, and darker greens, and then this orange t-shirt and a yellow cardigan. I'm trying to buy mostly things that will last me for years, rather than cheap trendy stuff. Whenever I identify something that I want, I check my closet to see if I already have something that is similar or fills that same role. If I don't want to wear what I already have, it goes in the donation pile.

I also know that many things that I wear in the fall will roll over into my winter capsule, so I'll get more than three months' worth of use out of them. That makes it easier to spend a little more on a higher quality item.

I'll keep sharing my process as I build my wardrobe, and I'd love to hear about yours. Leave your link in the comments if you like!  

Monday, September 14, 2015

Black and White Tee, Black Skinnies and Blue Oxfords

Hi friends, here's Monday's outfit. I'll share my weekend outfits later today. I'm up way past my desired bed time!

Friday, September 11, 2015

White Tee, Grey Jeans and Naot Sandals

It's Friday! Do you have fun weekend plans? We're going to ride on Thomas the Tank Engine at the Railroad Museum. I hope to get some yard work done, too. I haven't been doing anything for my garden besides picking tomatoes and basil. 

Today's outfit is no surprise. It's my mom-of-little-kids uniform of jeans and a t-shirt. The shirt is from Everlane, and it just fits correctly, the seams don't twist around, it doesn't stretch out or shrink into a weird proportion, and it looks like a real shirt, not an undershirt. Every t-shirt should be this way, but so many from other companies are not. 

Then I added some ripped-knee grey boyfriend jeans and my summer sandals. If you wear distressed jeans, do you feel like you need to dress up a little so you don't look sloppy? I'm liking adding a necklace to such casual outfits. It's making feel more put-together and ready to be out in public. Since I've been using my cheap necklaces a lot, I think I might buy one that's a bit higher quality and more of the style that I like nowadays. I've seen a few good ones on Etsy, but I'm still thinking about it. Slowing down and waiting before buying things is hard at first, but it's becoming easier and easier with practice.  

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Outfits 9 and 10: September 2015

Hi there! I have two outfits to share today. Last night, instead of blogging, I actually went to bed early and slept 7 hours and 59 minutes! So close to my goal of 8 hours. :) 

Black tee, boyfriend jeans and ankle boots. I wasn't sure if ankle boots would work with boyfriend jeans, but I like how they look together. 

Navy jersey dress and blue oxfords. This outfit is extremely comfortable and easy, but it looks nice. It's so easy to get dressed, I can easily take a minute to add a necklace and bracelet. By the way, this dress has pockets! They come in so handy, even just around the house. 

How is your wardrobe shaping up for September? Are you transitioning to fall clothes, or is summer still going strong where you live? Tomorrow the temperature is only supposed to get up to 75 degrees, which sounds amazing! If you're looking for us, we'll be at the playground.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Navy Tee, Cropped Jeans and Naot Sandals

The temperature has been in the 80s here lately, so it still feels summery during the daytime. But the sun is setting earlier, and that means my kids can go to sleep a little earlier. Yay! It also makes it a bit easier for me to go to bed earlier, which I am perpetually trying to do. I'm still working on building that habit, and I'll take all the help I can get. 

Monday, September 7, 2015

Saturday, Sunday and Monday: September 2015

I hope you had a great Labor Day weekend, if you're in the U.S. We went to a fun block party on Saturday, and then Sunday was a pretty lazy day. Today I did a bunch of cleaning and food prep for the week - I'm trying to get back in the habit of eating better.

Orange tee, black skirt and ankle boots. This shirt is new, from Boden. The skirt is part of my summer capsule, and the ankle boots are the same ones I was wearing last year. It's nice to get out old favorites when the right season comes around again.

Navy tee, chambray shirt, cropped jeans, and clogs. The navy tee is new, from Boden. The chambray shirt and cropped jeans are from my summer capsule. I got the shoes out of storage (the back of my closet). See, I fell in love with these clogs: 

but I decided to try wearing the ones I already have for a while. Maybe that will satisfy my desire for the black ones. Maybe I will realize that I don't want to chase kids while wearing wooden shoes. We'll see. 

Splatter tunic, BF jeans, and white Converse. I just sewed this tunic. The jeans are new this season (from Old Navy) and the Converse are from my summer capsule. It's not really quite cool enough yet for this outfit in the daytime, but it was great for the evening. 

Friday, September 4, 2015

Thursday and Friday Outfits: September 2015

Hello, Friday! I spent yesterday's blogging time on organizing my sewing area - whoops! And I may have also been watching Project Runway. I always want to sew more when I see that show. They whip up entire outfits in a day or two of sewing (plus they have plenty of time to make snarky comments about each other's work).  

Yesterday's outfit was just Summer Capsule clothes: my octopus t-shirt, chambray skirt, and silver sandals.

Then today's outfit was super simple: a white t-shirt, my new denim A-Line skirt, and espadrilles. 

This weekend I hope to finish organizing my sewing stuff plus all the other things in that room. I have a space in our basement that houses my office, home gym, sewing, and all my other crafting and art supplies. I'm channeling KonMari to try to only keep what I really love. I also have to admit that a couple of projects that I started long ago will never be finished, and just get rid of them. But I bet I'll still have plenty of fabric, patterns, paints, yarn, etc... to keep me busy for years to come. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Orange-Red Top, Grey Boyfriend Jeans and Blue Converse

My second outfit of September is pretty much my uniform: a t-shirt and jeans. 

This top is from Boden and I'm really happy with it. It's made of modal and cotton and it's got great drape. I've washed it and dried it on extra low heat, and I can't notice any shrinkage.  

I'm so glad I tried this color. Before doing my seasonal color analysis, I didn't really think of orange as "my color" but now I do!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

September Additions

Woo-hoo! Today I get to add some new clothes to my wardrobe. I'm still using my summer clothes, but I'm adding in what I need from my fall clothes as it cools off. Today I'm sharing the pieces that I've bought for fall, and I'll tell you more about them as I wear them. 

This is now my fifth capsule and I feel ready to spend a little more to get better quality clothes. I know what I like, and what I have actually wanted to wear over the past year. I think I'm making good choices for clothes that will serve me well this fall and winter and into the future. I will be really surprised if I don't end up wearing all of these a LOT.  

Here's what I've added:

September Additions

From left to right, starting at the top:
Pine and Ivory striped Breton tunic from Boden
Green, blue, and ivory plaid cardigan from ModCloth

Row 2:

Row 3: 

And here's my first outfit of the month:
Black and white top (from summer capsule), denim A-line skirt from Boden, light blue slip-on oxfords by Pikolinos. I have been vaguely looking for an A-line denim skirt for a couple years now, and this one fits the bill. Surprisingly, I had to order the short version to get the length that I want. At 5'10", I almost always order tall clothes when they're available. 

I like the extra little interest added by the cloth black and white patterned belt. Hey, some of us start small with pattern-mixing.