Green and Navy Blue Stripes

Ray Ban wayfarers (purchased with Amazon gift card) / TJ Maxx shirt / J.Crew skirt and Jones New York sandals via Avalon / Dooney and Bourke purse via Goodwill / Michael Kors watch (gift)

The more subdued colors of this outfit have me thinking of fall. The original inspiration came from several green and navy blue striped items in the J.Crew spring/summer lines. I found this top for $10 at TJ Maxx and purchased it with a gift card from my sister. The playfulness of the stripes is such a nice contrast to the serious pencil skirt — a pin stripe one at that. I like how the mismatched stripes add to the slightly off kilter look.

J.Crew, I Love You

J.Crew necklace and pencil skirt / Willie Smith via T.J. Max blouse / Jones New York sandals / Ray Ban wayfarers
My addiction to J.Crew is satisfied by two sources: consignment shops and eBay. Sarah from Simply Sarah was the one who turned me on to this J.Crew necklace on eBay for $15 plus free shipping. It turned out to be a great buy, and I love how it turns this typical work look into something with a little more panache.

The pencil skirt is from Avalon Exchange. I’ve only owned a couple of very nice pencil skirts, and I have to say this one by far has had the best fit. It hugs in the right places, but still looks work appropriate. It’s the perfect example of why a pencil skirt is such a wardrobe staple. I also love the navy blue and pin stripe for summer.

This is also the debut of these tan sandals, which were bought at Avalon for $10. I knew I wanted to add a vintage sandal to my repertoire this summer, and these are in great condition. Don’t you just love the straps?

Jenna Lyons on Today

A long time admirer of retailer J.Crew and Jenna Lyons, I pay attention to every article and news story done on the company’s President and Executive Creative Director. She just seems to be in a job that suits her perfectly, and it helps that she seems so down to earth. I would love to just sit and have a cup of coffee with her and have her give me everything from fashion to life advice. See her clip on the Today Show.

Sunday reading and some thoughts

Sunday has been the perfect day so far. I woke up early, watched Sunday Morning, and went back to bed. When I rolled out of bed again I did some cleaning, which is very calming for me, and some Internet browsing. I came upon this article: J.Crew helps preppy go Euro by Virginia Heffernan for the New York Times. J.Crew has been in the news a great deal lately, as everyone is extremely impressed by the creative direction of Jenna Lyons. This particular article touched on how J.Crew made preppy accessible. It made me think about how any trend, any “look” is made accessible and affordable by stores like Forever 21 and H&M. I know I enjoy being able to satisfy my fix for fashion quickly instead of having to save my money for a bigger more long lasting purchase. Immediate gratification is always better of course. I have a constant internal debate about whether I should just invest in the better quality product. However, I see a great benefit in putting everyone on a similar playing field as far as access to fashion. I love to see all of the style blogs that feature a mixture of high-end and low-end pieces as well as thrifted and vintage clothing.

Fall jackets part 2

By now you must know that I am obsessed with jackets. Wearing one really is a great way to offset and compliment an outfit. Not to mention keep you warm during fall’s fluctuating temps. I love that tweed can be worn a number of ways from the office to going out, and the embellished versions available now look very dressy and demure. I am quickly becoming a fan of the leather jacket. Not only has it been a garment symbolizing cool, from James Dean to Joan Jett, the tough exterior really creates a great contrast to the frilly, girly dresses and outfits that I love to wear. Lastly, the equestrian jacket, which remains a staple for lines like Ralph Lauren, and pops in and out of mainstream retailers. The best part of the equestrian jacket is that it is so flamboyant you only need it and some very subtle accompaniments to wear it. It is the statement. And fall is the best time to wear this hunting-inspired piece.
1. J.Crew Houndstooth bomber, $298
2. J.Crew Shimmer tweed Ruby jacket, $325
3. Loft tweed jacket, $148
4. Express Leather quilted shoulder jacket, $98
5. Target Moto jacket, $39.99
6. Delia’s Layla ruffle jacket, $79.50
7. Piperlime Tinley road equestrian blazer, $59
8. Jack Wills Queenhill equestrian jacket, $449
9. Anthropologie Garment district blazer, $148

Fall shopping guide: Jackets part 1

Now that it’s September and we are weeks away from the official start of fall, I’m starting to feel it. I saw a Halloween City open up next to my gym this morning, and I couldn’t be more excited. What kind of fashion enthusiast am I? I get excited about pop-up Halloween stores. Or maybe that just proves how bad my retail addiction is? Anyways, I thought I would post some shopping guides with my favorite fall clothes. First up are jackets. I love everything about military-inspired jackets. The zippers, the gold and brass buttons, the fabrics. Nothing is easier then throwing one over a summer dress and heading out the door. Next, the gray blazer. This is one of my favorite neutrals to layer over dark purple and pink jewel tones. I especially love the soft knit gray blazer from Banana Republic. It looks so soft. And, finally, the navy blazer. It instantly makes me think of fall because of the start of school and it’s scholarly look. And it’s such a nice compliment to the traditional rich colors of fall. One through 9 are some of my favorite retail brands that you can find at most malls and 10 through 18 may be a little harder to find/afford, but luckily Cleveland has its own Saks Fifth Avenue. I will be posting part 2 of my favorite jackets for fall next week. So stay tuned. Happy shopping! 

1. J.Crew Waxed army jacket, $148
2. Loft belted military jacket, $89.50
3. Loft Twill cropped military jacket, $59.99
4. Solid knit Thandie Blazer, $148
5. Banana Republic Eva blazer, $150
6. Delia’s Paxton tweed blazer, $59.50
7. J.Crew Navy school boy blazer, $188
8. Gap Lightweight wool blazer, $98
9. Urban renewal vintage boys blazer, $48

10. 3.1 Phillip Lim military jacket, $298
11. Marc by Marc Jacobs Uniform Jacket, $298
12. Rag & Bone Military Jacket, $475
13. 3.1 Phillip Lim Jersey blazer, $395
14. Alice + Olivia Peplum blazer, $440
15. Marc by Marc Jacobs Herringbone blazer, $428
16. Smythe blazer, $262.50
17. Rag & Bone Nancy blazer, $329
18. Aubin & Wills blazer, $202.50

Work approp: Structured ruffles

I got this dress as a birthday gift from my aunt. Normally I would restrict its wear to weekends and going to the beach, but I thought it would be an interesting dress to pair with my structured work blazer. I really like the color and shape of the jacket with the soft flirty ruffles and colors of this dress. And it classifies as work appropriate. In our employee handbook, a skirt can be 6 inches above the knee. Can you believe that? That’s quite short.
I was really excited when I saw this bridge. I thought it would be an awesome place to take outfit photos. Apparently there are many more joggers and cyclists in this park than I thought. One passed every minute, and stared. It was also extremely hot and humid. So if I look like I am in pain in these photos, it may very well be the case. I think you can actually see the humid haze in the top photo. 
H&M blazer; American Eagle dress; Nine West sandals; J.Crew necklace

What I love about summer…

I’ve got fall on the brain. All I can think about are chunky sweaters, turkey, and scarves. It doesn’t help that retailers have our brains so perfectly trained that we start thinking of fall exactly at this time of year when fall clothes are just appearing in stores. It’s too early, and it’s too hot. Summer is too short and too wonderful to be thinking about fall. So I decided to compile a list of my favorite things about summer that I want to savor for as long as possible.

1. The number one thing I wish for when it’s cold outside is to be able to throw on a cute dress and run out the door without a care in the world.

2. I love to eat and dine with friends. The only thing better than eating itself is eating outside.

3. I am not into all of the really really dark or hoppy beers. I like the light, fruity taste of a good summer beer.

4. Living near Lake Erie, an accessible beach is a 5 minute drive away. The beach is a hallmark for my entire summer whether on vacation or not.

5. I am starting quite a collection of bathing suits. I love them all—polka dot, striped, or solid. And nothing is more comfortable or sexy in this weather than a bikini.

6. I love being able to decorate a table with fresh flowers and seeing them growing in the garden.

7. Showing off my colorful toe nails. This may seem boring, but I love wearing sandals, and plus, my toes have to hide for the other 9 months of the year.

8. Summer fruit and farmer’s markets. I hate when stores start carrying three varieties of fruit—apples, oranges, and bananas. Give me watermelon, cantaloupe, and peaches any day.

9. Longer days. I have a lot to accomplish in a day. I don’t like when it gets dark outside at 5 in the dead of winter.

10. Summer vacation/trips. I love to travel and a long weekend in the summer is no better excuse to pick a place on the map and just drive. A week at the beach is nice too.

Wants and Cravings

My wants and cravings list this week makes me think of vacation. If you were somehow stranded on a Mediterranean island, you would really need little else besides this summery perfume, cute tote, sexy sandals, and this gorgeous gold bangle. And maybe just a bikini. You can’t walk around naked the entire time. What have you been craving this week?

I love anything that has a hint of green tea. Tocca perfume

I am in pain because of how cute this bag is. Dooney & Bourke Martina Bag

Oh sorry. Did I already mention how much I love this sandal? J.Crew Ares platform

Last but not least, this ridonculous $11,000 gold bangle. It’s so shiny, though! Tiffany & Co. Elsa Peretti bangle

(Top image via Cherry Blossom Girl)