Danier: I need to look away!

...but it is SOOOO hard when I see this beautiful mixed media coat - in INK  wool and black leather!  I SO WANT it! But the only coat I really need this year is a new puffer and money is short...but this is so beautiful!!!!
Need to stay strong!

On the other hand it is good that this flared skirt comes in black only: if it was available in cognac or burgundy or some other color I would be so tempted...but I am safe with black! :-)


How my closet let me down... (looooong)

This is how it usually happens: when you think your closet is in a great shape something comes along to show you it is not so!

It came to me in a form of unexpected summer business trip....

I was leaving early Monday morning and knowing how reliable my closet is I left all packing for Sunday afternoon. Should be easy, right? Imagine my horror when I began to pull things from my closet  to build outfits for travel and suddenly realized  that I don't have right items for the trip!

Here are the conditions: 
- Location: US South in August (North Carolina). Hot and humid outdoors and of course arctic A/C indoors;
- Venue: IT at the bank so I need to pack business casual;
- Duration: 5 days including plane-to-office and office-to-plane outfits.

My regular work code is smart casual (self-imposed, my office is just casual). However I could not dress the same way for the trip, I need business casual as I was going to the bank.

I have started with bottoms. I will take one skirt and one pair of pants for the variety. For a skirt I selected Halogen grey pencil skirt.
Now for the pants (pic 1). My first thought was micro-window pane tuxedo stripe pants which are a nice weight for summer. However when I began to create outfits with them they just did not feel right for the occasion:
they felt too busy for the customer site so I gave up after a while.

Oh bother - none of my other pants works either:

  • blush khaki - too casual in fabrication;
  • linen grey pants - the same;
  • micro check crops - too big now, don't feel fab in them anymore; also that cropped length was more like shorts - not appropriate for the bank setting;
  • all denim is out;
  • white wide leg pants - they might have worked but I wore them once already and they were in the laundry;

OK, maybe I take 2 skirts. Let's see (pic 2):

  • flared midi with subtle silver stripes - too big now and this style just does not seem business-y enough for the occasion;
  • striped VC tube - too casual and too busy;
  • red Halogen pencil skirt - the color feels too bold;
  • polka dot flared midi - too busy.

Hmmm, no luck with another skirt - how about a dress (pic 3):

  • floral sheath - feels too busy;
  • tropical print sheath - too busy and bright.

Other dresses are either too casual or too warm for summer (like my Tahari ponte sheath).


Hold on, I have Martin black cigarette trousers, should work, right? Put them on - they are too big now! They supposed to be fitted and not fluid so they definitely look wrong (see how the fabric sticks out on the hips?) - pic 4.

Oh no! My flight is in 12 hours, my bed is strewn with clothes and I have nothing to wear!!!

In the end after 3 agonizing hours I did take the black cigarette pants: I paired them with long blouses to cover the ill-fitting hips and bum and they were passable.

So this is what I took in the end for 5 days (pic 5 - 9):

  • 2 jackets (cream and blue Zara jackets: I think they were fine even though not very formal. If I had business meetings it would be a different issue but for working in IT they were fine);
  • one skirt;
  • one pair of pants;
  • 2 long blouses;
  • 1 sleeveless and 1 short sleeve top to wear with a skirt under a blue jacket;
  • one button down to wear with the skirt sans jacket.
  • 2 pairs of shoes: silver pumps and round toe grey low wedges. I don't love these wedges now but they worked and I traveled in them. 

I survived this trip and want to think that I did not look like a hot mess but it uncovered some serious holes in my work wardrobe. Some of them are related to my weight loss (half of my bottoms are too big now) but they also show that I am lacking a proper business casual capsule which can work for me for 2 week trip. That interview jacket / suit hole I discovered some time ago? It also would be a part of this capsule. I also need it to work for summer and for winter - or I need 2 seasonal capsules.
So now I have this work cut out for me: to create this business capsule(s) re-using what I already have (if possible) and adding what I definitely lack.
I think I will be doing another post on this subject as I sure need help with this!

Sorry it was such a long post - if you stayed with me to the end you are my hero :-)


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Red / orange / pink: what I might wear

As usual Angie's Friday ensemble was a delight and I wanted to try it out badly. Alas - I was on a business trip with a very limited wardrobe which did not contain any of these colors! :-(
Well, I returned home today and guess how I spent my afternoon? Recreating Angie's ensemble of course! Too bad it was just for fun as suddenly our weather turned to summer and it is too hot to sport booties and scarf now. So aside from my cats you are the only ones who got to see it :-)
This neon orchid pink linen sweater came to mind right away when I was thinking about this outfit. Easy: this is the only bright (ish) pink item I own. Red Munro booties was another no-brainer: this is my only dark red item aside from one dress. First I paired them with dark wash BF jeans and animal print belt for the orange and liked it. However then I saw these grey linen pants and thought that I may like this color better than navy with this look but I was not happy about the animal print belt with this grey. Then I remembered that I have a silk scarf with some orange in it...voila!

I definitely may wear it in September if weather cools down...what do you think?


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WIW: dark red with light blue and others...

pic 1 Dark Red and Light Blue
This morning ensemble post inspired me to dig in my closet in search of dark red and light blue! My light blue selection is pretty limited as it was less than a year ago I discovered that it actually suits me and began to add it to my wardrobe. Interestingly I always knew that dark deep red suits me but somehow it mostly evaded me so I was not sure if I can use the formula today. Then I remember that I do have a dark red dress  - I usually wear it in cool weather but this summer is cool enough.
Remembering Aida's rebellious outfit with midi wide culottes, longer fluid sweater and flats I decided to rebel to and added my oversized faded denim moto (light blue!) and flat  leopard loafers to continue the cognac theme from the belt. I may be kidding myself but I thought it is just flattering enough and felt good all day!

pic 2 Navy Stripes and Shades of White
I am so happy I got this Zara cream jacket as Angie's shameless copycat - I love it so much! Ideally I would like it to be a bit longer but I found that I like this length paired with longer tops and pants - or with dresses and skirts.

pic 3-4 Blushing Tuxedo
I really like the tapering  we did for these tuxedo window pane trousers. They were supposed to be slim fit but I sized up and got them tapered for a completely different look. I prefer this outfit sans jacket but I need a topper for  my A/C office. What do you think of this pairing of faded denim biker and these trousers and shirt?

pic 5 Plaid and Mesh
I bought this mesh polka dot sweater in Madewell several years ago and this summer I have not worn it at all. I decided to wear it this day - and it went to the Goodwill bag in the end of the day. The mesh is too large, the length is too long (awkward to semi tuck), the sleeves stretch out during the day and I do not feel fab in it. I think it looks better in the picture than IRL - out!

pic 6 Bright blue, ink and polka dots
I wanted to wear my polka dot midi flared skirt AND bright blue Zara blazer this day. I was not sure which top to layer under the jacket and was considering white but in the end decided to go with ink linen tee (waving to Suz). The tee is pretty oversized and not welted so I twisted one side and semi-tucked it to get more structure.

This was my week at a glance - thanks for looking and as usual all comments and suggestions are much appreciated.
Have a great weekend and enjoy summer until it is over!


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WIW: you call it summer?

This is the weirdest summer ever! It is mid-August and supposed to be the hottest time of the year - and here we are shivering from the cold! I am considering to pull out my woolen sweaters from the storage to keep warm. Unbelievable!
In addition this week was rainy and gloomy - often felt more like mid-November than mid-August. I needed colors and white to cheer up myself!

#1 This one is for Suz
Pairing my new KUT plaid jeans from NAS with my orange silk shirt from Costco. How do you like it with the jeans? It is interesting that I like this bright orange with the muted plaid of these jeans but that bright yellow blazer from #3 does not work to my eye. Colors are so unpredictable!

#2 Mini-checks and blue
I am not sure how I feel about these long mini-check shorts anymore. This is their 3rd summer and I wear them not as often as previous seasons. What is your honest opinion on them?

#3 Yellow and stripes

This Gap yellow blazer is another piece I don't wear as often as last season. Maybe I just tend to wear newer stuff more often because I got bored with the old? This blazer is also loosing its prime so very likely I will retire it after this year.

#4 Cream and blush

This is a nod to one of Angie's stunning outfits tried with Gap marled sweater.

What do you think about these Fidji nude pumps here? I am not sure about them lately. They are not as refined as what I prefer to wear now but on the other hand they have unique shape which does not say dated to me. They are also comfortable which is a big plus - but how do they look? 

These are all pictures I had a chance to get this week. All comments and suggestions are appreciated!

Have a great weekend - and hopefully better summer weather than we are having!


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I have a crush on Angie's friend...

...Stuart Weitzman  that is!
I am in love with those pointy toe oxfords! Aren't they fab? If only they were all leather and not fabric I would order them...but unfortunately fabric is not practical enough for this price point :-(
 Another love - these dress tall boots - aren't they gorgeous? If I win a lottery (or rob a bank)  they will be mine!
I want these Regent pointy toe flats as my interview shoes to go with my new navy suit - what do you think?
How about these Slash Chelsey booties for the fall?
Oh, and I would not say no to a pair of ink or patterned Poco kitten heels - actually they can be my other interview shoes, no?

As I said - I am in love!


My unstructured summer dress: keep or toss?

I wore this dress with flat ankle strap sandals to Toronto last weekend and decided that I don't feel fab enough it in so I was thinking about demoting it to a summer loungewear.
However Angie's post about the "flag dress" got me thinking that maybe it still has potential at least for this summer?
I decided to give it another go and wore it today to a farmer market with gold slipper flats and platinum crossbody bag (pic 1)  It is pretty breezy and would be nice on a really hot day (which today was not but I was not freezing in it either - YAY for no A/C on the market!)
I am including other pictures to give a better idea how it looks on me from all angles. Originally it had a belt and a strap on the collar but I removed both. I have left all loops intact because they look fine IMO. I also tried to close the collar (pic 2) and wear it open (pic 5).
What do you think? Keep or demote? I am on the fence now...
Thanks for your help!


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WIW: I got back my camera!

My son went away for a week and took my camera with him. I tried to take pictures with my hubby's camera  but did not have much success  - hence no outfit post last week.:-( However my camera is back now so here we go!

pic #1 Blush and white
These are my Gap khaki pants from last year - and I think this is their last season. As much as I loved and wore them last summer I just do not feel the same love this year. I still like the color and slouchy vibe but I think the reason is the fabrication. Cotton khaki is too casual for my liking and not crisp enough. I think I will take them to my Utah hiking trip in September and then say good bye...but I would love similar style blush trousers in dressier fabrication!
I am also no thrilled with the whole outfit - this is what happens when you dress in the morning in a hurry. I should have not used a gold belt and silver tote here, somehow they do not play together...oh well!

pic #2 Blue, black and white
Another outfit I was not 100% happy with and the reason is this skirt: it just does not fit well anymore! It bunches on the hips and on the back :-( After that day it went into Goodwill bag right away! 
This is JCrew navy linen tee and I really like how easy it drapes. I have tried a new tucking technique with it here: grabbed the hem on the side, twisted a couple of times and tucked into the skirt. How does it look?
I have washed this Zara jacket for the first time and it was a success: I did not even have to iron it (except the lining). Gotta love white blazer which is machine washable!!!

pic #3 Blue again...
This day I was much happier.These mini-windowpane tuxedo trousers from Long Tall Sally are similar in style with Gap khakis but fabrication is dressier and holds better through the day (khaki got all wrinkled from sitting). Paired with indigo silk sweatshirt from Le Chateau (which looks more like cobalt in this light) and white blazer from Melanie Lyne. 

pic #4 ...and more blue!
Even happier today...or was it because today is Friday? :-)
Anyway I like to pair light blue and navy together and throw some white in as well. I still like these white Editor trousers from Express but they are on the brink of being too big for comfort so I am wearing them now while I can. I like how they move and swish around - such a nice change from tight skinnies!
(sorry, could not resist to insert that picture in the middle just for fun pose)

So here was my week. As usual all comments and suggestions are very welcome.
Have a great weekend!


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JCrew loafers: what do you think?

I love JCrew cognac monk strap loafers from Angie's round up and seriously considering to order them if they go on sale. However while browsing other shoes on JCrew site I was strangely attracted to those double zip loafers as well. Am I crazy or are they cool?
They look pretty plain except for the zips and at first I was not sure...but they are growing on me. Now I think they are sleek and streamlined and actually like a low cut pair of booties...
I want a navy pair but it is gone in y size now. I wonder if burgundy pair can be equally versatile for me...
What do you think? Double zip or monk strap for me?

Oh, and JCrew also has Chelsea booties now which come in black and chocolate...another consideration...