There are many mornings when I put on an outfit I selected the night before, take my pictures for the blog, and then change up outfit details before I go out the door. Somehow the process of photographing my outfit makes me re-think the “look” of the day.
With this ensemble, it was only once I got dressed that I remembered the problem with these culottes – fun pattern, great price when I bought them, BUT unflattering with a tucked-in top. Wearing a wide belt helped, but I was still dissatisfied. Just the same I left for work without making any changes. Around midday when the weather warmed up and I took off the jacket, I finally figured it out. I untucked the chambray shirt (long shirttail) and put the belt over the shirt – voila! No pictures of this change, but next time I’ll remember how to wear these culottes successfully!
I love me a metallic shoe and, although I do have silver heels, I am especially partial to metallic flat shoes. I bought some wonderful silver brogues at Zara two years ago. So great to wear with distressed jeans or plaid skinny pants. I also have a pair of gold ankle strap flat sandals that I love. The brogues have finally bitten the dust and I am on the lookout again for flat metallic shoes! I could go for silver, gold or even pewter and of course there are a number of styles to consider.
Metallic Brogues – available in many different designs. Here are a few.
Metallic Flats – so beautiful!
Here are a few more affordable beauties. Remember that metallics go with every color!
I wore out the orange ones I had last summer, so it’s time to find a new pair. Here are a few I have my eyes on. For now, I think I’ll try the neon yellow pair since they’re the cheapest!
Jeanne says: Well, now I am on the hunt for the perfect white flowy tunic for summer. I’d like a tunic that I can throw over jeans and wear as a beach cover-up. This search is tough because I want to steer clear of “older fashionista” tunics – too long and often too voluminous – as well as the current boho/gypsy trend – way too young and 70’s for my taste. The past several years I’ve gone for exaggerated hi-low tops that seems a little dated to me for this year. I can tell this search is going to be complicated. Here are a few examples of the kind of top I am seeking:
Oh, plus did I mention that I want something durable that doesn’t need constant dry cleaning or ironing? Here are a few versions I am considering:
Kate says: I’m definitely thinking about spring during this shopping diet. Switching out my wardrobe in a few weeks will give me a good infusion of “new” clothes that I haven’t seen in a while. But there are other items in my closet that I’d like to update, including these black flats.
I’ve been wanting to add a great pointy-toe black flat to my shoe collection. These two d’orsay styles caught my eye recently. I may miss out on the Gap Factory pair before the month is out (only one size left!), but the J.Crew Factory pair is a good second choice.
Jeanne says: Kate is so calm and rational about this diet. I, on the other hand, am not. Since I cannot buy, I am trying to simply stay away from shopping sites — online and bricks and mortar.
I am like Kate in that I always think my shoes for the season before anything else. And shoes are the only items I’ll even consider buying at full retail. So, in the name of full disclosure, I have to admit that I bought one pair of warm weather shoes before the diet began.
Aren’t these gorgeous? I got them in the “champagne nickel” color which will go with everything. Love, love, love.
The other shoes I am tracking are sneakers. I crave these Loeffler Randall sneakers:
but I doubt that they’ll ever get to my $75 price point. So instead I’m actually holding out for this very bright Superga design from last year.
I’ve seen them online in the $40-$50 range so my fingers are crossed that I’ll get them.
Jeanne says: I love my peach waffle midi from Topshop. It came with a matching crop top, which really dresses it up. It goes perfectly with a silly fuchsia and white tee shirt. Many people think midi skirts call for dressier combos but Kate and I know that a more casual tee shirt is perfect. Aside from its matching top, I think a tee shirt is the best complement to a cute midi skirt!
I love Kate’s ensemble here. First of all, there is NOTHING like the perfect white tee with anything and everything and she proves it here. Her tee looks fabulous with this purple midi skirt. And, may I add, any skirt that looks fabulous with a white tee looks equally good with a black turtleneck and tights in cooler weather. These are universal fashion rules for those in the know!
Kate says: I ordered this skirt before I even knew what a midi skirt was — and it’s been one of my favorites ever since. You know that one item in your wardrobe that you get compliments on every time you wear it? This is it. So it’s a no-brainer that an item that fabulous can hold its own alongside a white tee. With a statement necklace and strappy sandal, you’ve got a complete outfit.
Mom did find a great midi skirt at Topshop. Great color, great texture, great shape. Last time we saw it with a striped top; it looks perfect here with a graphic tee and skinny belt. I love how Mom has combined different pinks in the most nonchalant way… and don’t miss those great chartreuse sandals!
Given the current trend of shorts suits and the sweltering temperatures some of us are enjoying, we thought it’d be interesting to look at shorts for work. Of course, this could only fly in a business casual or creative workplace. But a longer short or even culotte easily mimics the look and feel of a pencil skirt or full skirt, and usually the lengths are about the same (that’s usually the big issue, right?).
We each took a stab at putting together an outfit that dresses long shorts up for work — let’s see what we came up with:
Jeanne says: As you can see from my picture, these shorts almost look like a skirt because they are skirt length. I think that is the secret of wearing shorts to the office for women of a certain age. After all, it is the length of the short or culotte that makes the look office-acceptable. I dressed my shorts up with other office-like apparel — namely, a peplum top and jewelry. If I quizzed my workmates, I’ll bet hardly anyone even noticed I had on shorts that day!
Kate says: I took a similar tactic to Mom — our outfits are almost identical! The key is here is pairing your shorts with a blouse (a dressy top ups the office factor), a heel (which makes it look like you’re putting some effort in), and jewelry (to pull everything together). I wasn’t sure what the reaction at my office would be to this outfit, but aside from a few comments about my new shoes (!), no one seemed to notice my shorts!
Tell us: would you try longer shorts for work? How would you pull the look together?
Kate says: As summer starts, my focus is on basics (I think this is what I said last year!). There aren’t any major trends I’m looking to follow right now; I really just want to add some really versatile items to my wardrobe and (as always!) infused it with some color and prints.
1) Printed maxi dress: I have a few great maxi dresses, but I’d like to take it up a notch with a fun print.
2) Metallic sandals: My sandal collection is almost complete – I have black, brown and nude. Now I just need a metallic!
3) Fun pair of shorts: Even though I don’t end up wearing shorts all that much since I can’t wear them to work, I’d love to try a new silhouette or print.
4) Nude heeled sandals: Simple strappy heeled sandals seem to be the look of this spring and summer, and I love how they look with both dresses and jeans.
5) Breezy summer tops: The perfect pairing with summer shorts or a pencil skirt for work.
The truth is that it is only the 11th of June — not even summer yet — and the summer clothes sales are almost over. At my place of work, attire for summer is pretty casual most of the time so I’m thinking about warm weather separates, sandals, and cover ups for cool Northern California evenings. Here are my five must-haves for the next few months.
Gold sandals – they are everywhere and they are really cute. My favorites are from Banana Republic. These beauties can be worn with casual day wear but can also add a little shine in the evening.
Track pants – I mean track pants worn for style. I’ve seen many on sale and I love these with flat sandals and open-toed booties. They are a great alternative to skinny ankle pants or jeans. Here are two examples I love:
One or two polished summer tops – I’ve been looking for short-sleeved or sleeveless tops that make a skirt or pants really look like an outfit. I’m eyeing a few from Banana Republic and Nordstrom. What do you think of these?
A jumpsuit – Look, there is no way I can wear rompers or those cute little city shorts and most summer dresses are just too short. So I’m going to buy a jumpsuit – my way to catch a current trend without looking silly for my age.
A Choker Necklace – I still love my statement necklaces, but chokers are coming on strong!
I can’t wait to get started on my summer shopping! How about you?
OK, let’s cut out the euphemistic term “ugly” — we’re really talking about Birkenstocks and faux almost Birkenstocks. Yes, they’re hot. The trend started last summer and has really taken over this year. They are, after all, very comfortable and if one can wear sneakers everywhere, why not Birkenstocks?
Jeanne says: OMG, I hate Birkenstocks. Is that clear enough for you? I never thought they were attractive in the 70’s and I think they look even worse today. It simply doesn’t help to make them pink or sparkly — they are UGLY. You might enjoy this slideshow where celebrities were asked about whether THEY liked Birkenstocks.
Kate says: I think we all (except Mom, I guess) went through a Birkenstocks phase at some point or another. For me, it was the shearling-lined clogs in high school — MAN, those were comfy. But I have never cared for Birkenstock sandals, and I really don’t understand their current role as a fashionable shoe. Sandals with super thick straps just aren’t flattering — they tend to make your feet look wider and flatter. I’ll stick with the more feminine styles, thank you!
Whether you like the ugly sandal trend or not, here are some pretty cute sandals under $100 to consider for the summer:
It’s time to forget the snow and ice and turn our thoughts to clothes for spring. Now that Jeanne is in California, of course, she will probably be wearing a lighter wardrobe within a few weeks. Kate, in DC, can still only plan and dream. We’ll start with Jeanne’s must-have items for warmer weather.
Jeanne says: I’ve been watching street style from New York, London, Paris and Milan and day-dreaming about fabulous outfits for spring/summer, but now I need to get a grip and think about real clothes for my real life. Here are the five things I am hunting for this spring:
Matching midi skirt and cropped top: not REALLY cropped, but shorter. I have seen a few that fit in my budget and could convey the look I want.
A wonderful, simple day dress that can be mixed and matched well: I’ve already found this! I can add many different belts or wear it minus a belt, add scarves and jewelry or even wear it as a long vest.
Something in Neoprene — preferably a skirt — I really feel like fabulous skirts are “where it’s at” especially for women of a certain age (for whom most dresses are simply too short).