marvelous (vintage) muumuu

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Some days, you just feel like wearing a muummuu, right? Or is this just me?

Even if I stand alone on this one, I love a good vintage muummuu. In the below photos, you can see how giant this dress is and then how different it looks once it’s belted. And seriously, the unbelted photo really doesn’t convey how truly muumuu this dress is.

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Here’s how I accessorized my 1960s house dress.  I love the front and back panel of the coordinating fabric.

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Dress: vintage ($50)

Belt: Bitten by Sarah Jessica Parker ($9) (I know, I know, I’ve said it before, but I miss that collection!)

Shoes: BC at Urban Outfitters (they are so old, I can’t even remember the price! Approx $30 on sale)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) I’m by no means a vintage expert, but I am buying more vintage pieces lately and really enjoying it.  One thing I have noticed is I’ve gone into a few vintage shops and found dresses with no tags, no markers of dates, and a staff’s inability to explain how the dress was acquired.  Maybe it’s just me, but I was a bit cynical in those shops.  It seems a bit odd to charge $100+ for a dress that may or may not even be vintage in the first place! As a result of this, I’ve tried to stick with shops that can approximate the date on the dress(ex: 1960/70s house coat)  and/or how it was acquired (ex: estate sale). However, because I’m not an expert in this (yet!), I say go with whatever makes you feel most comfortable when shopping vintage and look for reputable shops.

Here is an InStyle article that reviews more vintage shopping tips.

2) Vintage, and dress shopping in generally, can mean somewhat varied fits in dresses.  This dress looks really different belted than it does without a belt. When I shop consignment and vintage, I generally wear a tank top, and carry a belt in my bag in case there isn’t one in the store.  If you think carrying a belt is too bulky for your purse ( my purse has been called a mini suitcase), then consider carrying a ribbon with you to serve as a makeshift belt.

I’d love for readers to chime in with their vintage shopping tips! Anyone have any great tips?

Thanks for reading and stopping by!

fleecing it up in fall

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Today was one of those days where I couldn’t have picked a better day to cozy it up in a fleece-y layered outfit. I took the dip in temperature to mean I needed to go all out fall with dark nails, jewel tones, tall boots, leggings and a scarf. Seriously, readers, you know I LOVE a good theme outfit.

I wore an orange cowl neck top with my favorite fleece moto jacket (I told you I wouldn’t be taking it off).

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Seriously, who doesn’t love socks peeking out of their tall boots and leggings?

I painted a french manicure on my nails with super dark turquoise nails (Dive Bar by Essie) and gold tips (Gold Album by Fergie for Wet n’ Wild).

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Here’s me looking (not so) tough with someone’s motorcycle in my (not so) tough moto jacket. I didn’t stand too close in case they came out wondering why I was posing with it. Nothing to see here, folks, don’t mind my glamour shot session…

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Good times.

I wanted to stay outside and frolic in leaves all day. And drink pumpkin spice lattes, pick pumpkins, eat pumpkin squares…okay, you get the picture. All in good time, right?

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Sweater: H&M ($20)

Jacket: Gap ($40 marked down from $70)

Skirt: H&M ($20 marked down from approx $50)

Leggings: Old Navy ($10)

Socks: gift!

Boots: DSW ($15 marked down from $50)

Scarf: Urban Outfitters ($5 marked down from approx $60)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) I like to add a bit more color to an outfit by adding socks sticking out of my boots. My friend got me this pair from Target.  This is a great way to add color to any outfit for an affordable price! I tied the whole look together by wearing a scarf that contained the colors of my socks and sweater.  You can get knee socks literally anywhere these days,  I often find them at Target, Marshall’s, and H&M.

2) Maybe it’s just me, but I live in layers in fall and winter. There’s so much variability between temperatures indoors and outdoors and from morning to night, so I tend to pile on layers.  I keep my looks from looking overly busy by wearing some similar tones (i.e. gray jacket and gray skirt) along with my bold colors.  I tend to get gray, black, and white for my skirts, jackets, and sweaters so that I can get a lot of use out of them by matching them with more colorful pieces. Layer it up! 

Anyone else have strategies for mixing and matching layers in fall?

Hope everyone had a good weekend, readers. Thanks for visiting and sharing in my thematic fashion adventures!

slate school days

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One of my truly lovely friends bequeathed to me the slate Opening Ceremony shoes pictured here.  They easily have become my new love.  Seriously, it’s hard not to love something so unique and special such as a suede, knotted, slate colored bootie.  My heart is a’flutter.  Toss on my Sleeping on Snow sweater that I got on consignment for $16 and I am in slate heaven.  This outfit felt very back to school to me. While I’m no longer in school, I cannot resist this updated slate school days look.

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The detailing on the shoes and sweater show just how passionate designers can be in regards to details and elegance. Can you tell I’m swooning? *sigh.

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Top: H&M ($20)

Sweater: Sleeping on Snow at Anthropologie via consignment ($16 marked down from approx $200)

Skirt: H&M ($20 marked down from approx $50)

Shoes: Opening Ceremony (gift)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) I’m really loving the fall transition look of skirts and dresses with no tights/leggings, but still closed toed booties.  I used to shy away from closed toed booties without tights/leggings because I thought it looked odd. I was so wrong! It’s actually a great way to transition clothes.  I plan to winterize this look by adding the tights when it gets a little cooler out.  To break up the gray and slate, I’m thinking of wearing pale blue or pale pink tights that match the plaid button down pictured here. I know I’ve said it before, but some things really need to be tried on to see how it will end up looking once your whole ensemble is complete.  I like to surprise even myself by ditching tights, for example, and doing something a bit differently than I have in the past. 

2) I’ve said it once I will say it a million times, I think consignment can be a great way to find pieces that otherwise would be costly.  $200 sweater for $16? You just cannot argue with that and frankly, the prices of pieces generally do not go that low in standard retail stores.  Still on the fence about how to effectively shop consignment? Here are a couple of articles that I like:

http://www.womansday.com/style-beauty/fashion-style/how-to-be-stylish-for-pennies-104716

This article even cites stores broken down by state:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/deborahljacobs/2012/11/23/consignment-shop-treasures-where-to-go-and-what-to-buy/

Anyone else have a favorite store they go to? I’m sure other readers would love suggestions!

Well, lovely readers, I’m going to swoon more over slate; thank you for stopping by!

pajama party

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After months of seeing the ‘pajama’ look everywhere, I decided it was time to give this look a try. I was even more convinced when I found of pair of these pants for $5 at Ann Taylor Loft. I mean, you really can’t go wrong at that price. And frankly, I never need an excuse to wear anything that has the comfort of pajamas at work.

Here is the resulting pajama party look.

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My girlfriend did stop me from wearing the pants with the drawstring exposed. We both agreed it took the look a little too far for work. For real, it was confusing. You couldn’t tell what was going on with my outfit. But, the little detail of tucking it in/hiding the drawstring made all the difference.

Exhibit A:

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Tucked in drawstring, Exhibit B:

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Jacket: Gap ($40 marked down from $70)

Top: Ann Taylor Loft ($12 marked down from approx $35)

Pants: Ann Taylor Loft ($5 marked down from approx $50)

Shoes: Nine West ($6 marked down from approx $100 via consignment)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) If you’re going to wear what looks like pajama pants to work (and I fully support that, by the way), then definitely wear formal shoes! I went with a very feminine pointy toe ankle strap heel to ensure that I was wearing a formal shoe with these more casual pants. Additionally, exposing the drawstring just didn’t make sense in this outfit, but would be totally fine outside of work. I like to think about how to adapt trends for the work setting, as you know, and I think this trend is definitely work appropriate with very slight modifications and thoughtful styling.

2) Ann Taylor pants = amazing lately. I’ve noticed some size variation between the different styles, but have been able to find a lot of great pants on sale there. Sale pants are an extra 40% off now: http://www.loft.com/, which makes them very affordable and easy to try out trends. I find it pretty difficult to find pants online because of the variability in sizing, but they do have a search function online (as do many stores) to find the style you want “in store” to ensure you don’t waste a trip looking for them in the store if they are sold out.

Anyone else loving pajamas at work? Are snuggies next? Just kidding. How about we stick with chic pajamas for work.

Thanks for stopping by readers; I love the support of my fellow blogging bffs and readers!!

autumn amor

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The early return of Pumpkin Spice lattes has really started this autumn off right, if you ask me. Thanks, Starbucks. You all know how much I love a good theme, and clearly autumn is one of favorite themes. Thus, today’s theme was ‘cozy autumn jewel tone layers.’  I couldn’t really think of a jazzy way to title that for the post, aside from shortening it to “autumn amor.” But, this look is totally autumn amor, so I think it works!

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Denim? Turquoise? Wedges? Layers? Pumpkin spice latte? I’m in autumnal heaven…

Toss me a pumpkin and some apples and I will get to work baking and telling you about my favorite Halloween movies…or you could just read on about shopping and fashion (probably a better choice, I tend to ramble about those things).

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Sweater: Banana Republic (approx $17 marked down from approx $70)

Denim shirt: Forever 21 ($20)

Pants: Gap (approx $35 marked down from $55)

Necklace: c/o Zegna Jewelry

Shoes: BC at Urban Outfitters (they are so old, I can’t even remember the price! Approx $30 on sale)

Jacket: DKNY (no price can be recalled for this one. I bought this on sale approximately 10 years ago at Marshall Fields, when it was still open)

Scarf: Nordstrom Rack (approx $10)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) This is my first attempt at transitioning patterned pants into fall/winter seasons.  I added a sweater and denim shirt to keep the look grounded in cooler weather, while still exposing my ankles with the cropped pants.  The sweater could also be worn in warmer weather but I kept it looking ‘autumn’ by wearing a denim shirt underneath and letting the denim extend past the shorter sleeves of the sweater.  

2) I’m always surprised when I have on a bunch of pieces from all different places and they all match.  However, it’s no surprise that I tend to wear turquoise and blues a fair amount.  Thus, when I find pieces in similar hues, I grab them and know that I can mix and match pieces easily.  I think having a couple of heavily rotated colors in your wardrobe makes mix and matching easy so that you can get more use out of your pieces.  

Anyone else have a color or colors that they tend to wear a lot? Anyone else going autumn crazy lately?

I want to thank Loveriennelife for the lovely award nomination for the Reader Appreciation Award! She has a wonderful blog! I very much appreciate the support I receive from her and all of you, readers!

(not so) mellow yellow

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Once upon a time, I used to shy away from yellow. I used to think the color looked odd against my blonde hair. But, never say never, because these days I am loving (not so) mellow yellow. When I found this dress, I decided to forgo my yellow aversion and venture forth into a new world of color, and I’m so glad I did.

I took this yellow dress from summer to fall with booties, a houndstooth blazer, and a statement necklace.

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Dress: Consignment, Cynthia Steffe ($15 marked down from $168)

Jacket: H&M (approx $15 marked down from approx $40)

Shoes: Sofft at Nordstrom Rack (approx $40 marked down from approx $120)

Necklace: Charming Charlie’s (approx $10 on clearance)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) I think consignment is one of those things that ends up being completely addictive once you get into it. If you haven’t already visited a consignment shop, I highly recommend it. Consignment is a good way to obtain high quality clothes at affordable prices. At one of my favorite shops, I found this Cynthia Steffe dress with the tags still attached and never worn! Here are my tips for finding a good consignment shop, as that makes a big difference when looking for a good shop:

-Do your research: look for reviews online on Yelp or Google reviews

-Check the price point of the shop: is it a high end shop with high prices? Or a high quality shop with reasonable prices?

-Look for shops that are slightly outside the city center: downtown shops tend to have the highest prices

-Ask friends where they shop and/or where they consign

-Consider consigning clothes you no longer wear and be sure to research whether you can obtain shopping credits for clothes you consign

2) As always, consider transitioning your summer dresses into fall and winter. This was another dress that I was not sure would transition well.  However, once I added the booties and blazer, I realized it was a great dress to transition. 

Here’s how I wore it a few months ago during summer…

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For winter, I plan to add black textured tights to transition this dress into another season.  

Anyone else still enjoying transitional looks this fall?

Happy weekend, readers! Almost time for the work week to begin again…stay tuned for more work looks for less!

perfectly plaid

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Oh the joys of a comfortable shirt dress. I’m pretty sure you can conquer the world in a great dress and this Burberry shirt dress is no exception. This was an absolutely lovely gift I received last year. It’s completely timeless and I feel fortunate to have received it. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves today…I particularly enjoyed when our photo shoot took a turn for the steamy when we came across a vent. They are different from the rest of the photos, but I loved them too much not to share! And yes, you can imagine what the outtakes looked like. About five seconds on that vent and I was over it.

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Dress: Burberry (gift)

Shoes: Dolce Vita at Bloomingdale’s outlet ($17 marked down from $100)

Necklace: Nordstrom Rack ($15 marked down from approx $35)

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Fashion Huntress tips:

1) While this dress was a gift, I do believe that if you’re going to invest in a designer piece, consider investing in something that will stand the test of time. Many stores such as Nordstrom Rack, Bloomingdales Outlet and Saks Off Fifth have a designer section for designer pieces at discount prices. I generally find that Nordstrom Rack has the best prices on these pieces. Often, there are “designer” racks, but I  frequently find designer pieces mixed in with other items. The clearance section at Nordstrom Rack generally has designers such as Tory Burch, DVF, Burberry, and Kate Spade (to name a few!).

2) I wear this dress year round, which means it gets a lot of use. When looking at designer pieces, consider pieces that you can transition through the seasons to really get a bang for your buck. In the summer, I generally wear the dress with nude sandals. In winter, I add orange tights, a long cream sweater, and boots.

Anyone else have a dress they love year round? Or pieces that have sentimental value?

Happy Friday, readers! Thank you, as always, for stopping by!