Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Little Pop of Color

Today was a quiet day, finally a little warmer and sunnier after the gray spell that hit the Northeast most of this week. It's funny, this first taste of fall... Saturday was beautiful, crisp and sunny, reminding me what I love about fall in New England. Then the rain and chill and unlifting gray started on Sunday, reminding me what fall in New England is actually like. I've been slogging around in tights and rainboots the last few days. But with today's sun, I went with an easy outfit combo I've done a lot: this little lace dress worn as a top (as it's scandalously short on me), a black skirt, and some sort of belt for a little color and more shaping.

Dress (worn as top): All That Jazz, thrifted something like 10 years ago. Skirt: Old Navy, thrifted. Shoes: Miz Mooz "Hazel" sandals, thrifted. Belt: thrifted. Earrings: handmade.

These Miz Mooz sandals are a new thrifted favorite, which I'd originally looked at due to their faint resemblance to those amazing Jeffery Campbell sandals that have been saturating the style blogs and striking desire in the hearts of many other bloggers. These have some of the same elements (wooden-ish base, ankle strap, black leather, studded trim, chunky heel), while also being really comfortable and actually being within my price range (I picked them up for $6, with only a little crack in the sole)!

Also, I'm interested to see that Miz Mooz still is selling these sandals. How long have they been selling this style, I wonder? Or how quick was their journey from newly purchased sandals to Goodwill secondhand shoes to me? The quick turnover of fashion...

Friday, August 20, 2010

An Experiment with a Hat

Really, this outfit was all about the hat, for me. I'm not sure whether it reads a bit too "country girl" for my taste, but it was a good start at the challenge that is hat-wearing. I'm starting to really love pretty! So helpful for making an outfit feel considered and polished! This has led to me picking up over the last couple of years a handful of lovely things in thrift stores, at the Dollar-A-Pound, on Ebay. And yet, I find hats very hard for me to wear, if only for how much I feel they stand out (especially the vintage hats that I particularly like). A baseball cap would pass unnoticed, in this city, or a utilitarian winter hat, but a hat that is clearly being worn for the purpose of a sort of old-fashioned fashion? I feel quite visible. And what are the propriety rules for women and hats these days? Should you take your hat off indoors? Does the subway count as indoors?

Dress: H&M, thrifted. White skirt: Forever21. Sandals: Chinese Laundry, thriftd. Straw hat: thrifted. Earrings: Claire's.

Hope everyone has some lovely weekend plans!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Back up on my feet again

You know when you've been working really hard, and have a lot that needs to happen, and you absolutely cannot get sick now because if you do nothing will ever be done? And so you don't get sick, and work through late nights and stressful times, and then finally you have a break. And you relax, and take a breath. And then promptly you get sick. Or is that just me?

At the very least, that was me Sunday through yesterday, felled by some sort of unpleasant stomach bug. I did get out of bed and go into work for a bit yesterday, as I had a demo and a meeting, but I still was thoroughly not up to par. So these pictures are from today, the first day I've felt (mostly) normal.

Dress: Xhilaration, thrifted. Tank top (underneath): Express. Shoes: Naturalizers, thrifted. Earrings: handmade.

Also, this dress now appears desperately wrinkled from being sat down in at a desk most of the day. Oops.

I don't have very much else to say, today. I'm quite behind on my blog reading and commenting, which is sad because I like seeing what everyone I know in blogworld is up to. I've just been in bed, reading historical fiction and sleeping. And not wanting to eat, which is completely foreign to me and really quite disturbing. My day tends to be marked out by meals, for better or for worse. I know the cycles of my stomach and generally, in my conscious and subconscious mind, am aware of when I'm next going to eat. Heck, my regularity with mealtimes (and complete awareness of when I need lunch NOW, please) is a bit of a joke around the lab. But this week, I just haven't felt like eating. And that makes me feel like I'm inhabiting someone else's body.

The really terrifying thing, though? The awareness that I had, for a few moments, that I lost a little weight...and labeling that, in my mind, a "good thing." No, it's not a good thing if I lose a few pounds because of sickness and dehydration and not wanting to eat more than saltines for a couple of days. But it's scary to me to see that little voice in my head could pop up and be pleased at how little food it took to satisfy me for a day. I've never had disordered eating behaviors, thanks to a strong love of food. But I've definitely gone through periods of trouble with my own body image and self-confidence, times when I wanted a metabolism that would be easily satisfied with small amounts of food eaten on occasion, rather than one that demands (and relishes) my regular mealtimes. I certainly need to get back to my workout routine, yes. I need to make sure I'm eating primarily food that is healthy and good for me and nutritious. I prefer when I'm strong, I prefer when I'm eating food that gives me energy and fills me up for a while rather than just the quick burst of a sugar high. But I also have a sweet tooth, and some curves, and a personality/metabolism that enjoys the process of preparing and eating tasty food. I do really like my body, I think. (I hate that my impulse is to qualify that, water it down with the "I think"! Are we not allowed to say we like our bodies?) So...I do. I like my body quite a bit. And I will be glad when it's over fully being sick.

I suppose I did have a bit to say, after all...

Friday, August 13, 2010

Triple the fun

So now that I'm back to quiet days at the lab, I have a little more time to play with my style. I even was pretty good about taking pictures over the last few days (if not posting them immediately). Helpful in this effort is the cheap extensible tripod I picked up a couple of weeks ago. It fits in my handbags easily, but goes up to 40 inches or so. I had tried the gorillapod flexible wrapping tripod idea, but one of the legs on the one I got popped off within a few days, and I generally had a hard time than I'd expected finding trees/posts/other things around which to wrap a tripod. So this new one is working much better for me.

This was Tuesday's outfit. Top: H&M, thrifted. Skirt: thrifted. Shoes: Nordstroms, thrifted (I can't tell you how many times I've worn these sandals since I got them early in the summer...). Bag: thrifted. Earrings: handmade.


Dress: thrifted. Black silk blouse: Calvin Klein, thrifted. Shoes: Chinese Laundry, thrifted. Bag: thrifted. Belt: thrifted. This outfit started with me trying to wear this cream dress that I'd gotten a while ago but hadn't worn, yet. But it's strapless, so I chickened out from wearing something strapless to the lab and layered another blouse over it. I need to find some occasions to wear strapless, somewhat-dressy things before the end of the summer!


Dress: thrifted. Skirt: Forever21. Sandals: Wet Seal. Belt: thrifted. I had a couple of casual meetings this day with people I had not yet met, which always makes me a bit over-conscious of what I'm wearing. I liked this outfit well enough. Also, look! It's obvious that I only rarely change handbags...I just stick all my stuff into one and leave it there for a while.

I really would like to take some time soon to go through my closet and figure out some fun outfits, instead of trying to pull something together in the morning right before I head out for the lab. I feel like I'm in a period of being kind of unsatisfied with my closet...not so much for the contents, as for my inability to figure out how I want to wear some of these things. I've been leaning toward a more vintage-inspired style recently, and would really like to do more experimentation with silhouette and shape, but it can be tricky for me to find outfits that make me feel pulled-together and stylish. Because I'm somewhat curvy, good fit and certain proportions seem to be really important for clothes to show off my shape rather than make me look schlumpy. For instance, though I dearly want to wear a couple of the thrifted blazers I've picked up over the last year or so, I haven't figured out a way to wear something with defined shoulders that balances well with the rest of my body and doesn't just make me look square all over (or that could at least do that in a way that pleased me). I'm still learning what works well on me/fits how I'd like to look, though. The creativity of the style blogosphere helps, here, in inspiration and exploration. Though it's also easy for me to fall into the trap of "If only I had some of their cute vintage dresses and beautiful shoes, then I too could be effortlessly stylish!" forgetting that what looks amazing on one person with particular coloring and a particular body type/height might or might not be flattering on me. Anyway. I've been thinking about this for a few days, and wanted to share...

Hope everyone has exciting weekends ahead!

Monday, August 9, 2010

We now return you to your regularly scheduled life...

I have survived the opera rehearsal period! And all of the technical elements I'm responsible for worked well enough. So that's a good thing. After a couple of weeks of daily 15-16-hour days in the theater (they let us in at 8AM and kicked us out by 11, or midnight if we'd arranged that beforehand...weekdays, weekends), we had an open dress rehearsal for an invited audience, packed up everything, and just put it on a boat for Europe, where the show will open in September. It's an amazing, crazy process. And now I am incredibly drained, physically and mentally. And have a fair amount to do before we go meet the show in mid-September. I took last weekend completely off, which helped a bit...

In the hot days of July, I really wanted to spend a lot of days looking like this (taken a couple of weeks ago before rehearsals picked up):

Shirt: Ann Taylor, thrifted. Skirt: Forever 21. Sandals: Wet Seal. Bag: thrifted.

But most of the time, I looked something more like this:

Top: BCBG, thrifted. Capris: Forever 21. Shoes: thrifted. Giant bag that could hold all my stuff going back and forth each day: thrifted.

Only imagine versions of this with a long sweater, because it was COLD in the theater! And with long jeans or black pants, because it was...cold in the theater. Still with the sneakers and flat shoes, though, because I had to be ready at any time to climb to the catwalks and do whatever was needed technically.

But it was all good. And we made things happen (though I can't take credit for the robots, I did make the set piece hanging in the second photo into a musical instrument, and have been helping the interactive visual elements):

Absolutely a traditional piece of theater, right?
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