Fall/Winter Fashion

When Fall Feels Like Summer . . .

Greetings and salutations on this dreary Monday morning!

I took a break from Coffee Talk yesterday because I didn’t feel well for most of the weekend and wasn’t feeling chatty yesterday morning. I did send out my email newsletter, though, with some weekend sale picks. (If you’re not signed up for those, you can do that HERE.)

Today I’m styling this floral sleeveless blouse. It’s perfect for this warm fall we’re having here in Pennsylvania, and it’s currently 50% off plus free shipping at LOFT!

I’m a warm weather girl through and through, and I don’t mind it a bit that fall is slow to arrive this year, but I do like my outfits to give a nod to the season even when the weather isn’t cooperating.

Florals grounded on a dark background have more of a fall vibe, but the lightweight material and sleeveless style keep me cool even when the weather feels more like summer.

I’ve already worn this top with grey jeans and a denim jacket, so for today’s post I’m styling it with my favorite blue jeans.

It also looks great paired with olive, khaki, white, and navy blue.

This top runs true to size; I have the small. And if you like the print but aren’t a fan of sleeveless, it also comes in a long-sleeve version.

SALE ALERT: 50% off your purchase + free shipping at LOFT with code OMG. See my LOFT Favorites in The Shop!

I wore my favorite peep-toe sandals and carried my trusty taupe tote. I like how these light neutrals provide some contrast against the darker colors of the rest of the outfit.

For accessories, I wore a silver layered necklace and hoop earrings. I also added this mixed metal bracelet.

All are Lucky Brand, so they work really well together without being too matchy-matchy.

While I’m definitely looking forward to sweater weather, I know it will last a long time once it gets here, so I’m trying to make the most of the warmth while we have it.

Adding a couple of sleeveless tops in fall colors to my closet is the perfect solution — and when it finally gets cold, I’ll just throw a cardigan on top and keep wearing them!

Outfit Details:

floral blouse (50% off) // similar jeans (option) // shoes // tote // earrings // necklace // bracelet

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Fall/Winter Fashion

Try-On Haul: Amazon, Shopbop, & Trunk Club

Saturday has rolled around again, and I’ve got a Trunk Club unboxing along with some Shopbop and Amazon Fashion finds to share with you!

Try-On Haul: Amazon, Shopbop, & Trunk Club

Let’s start with Amazon.

Amazon Fashion Finds Try-On Haul

I mostly ordered athleisure because . . . why not? I don’t wear a lot of athleisure personally, but I know a lot of women do, and I actually really like the Amazon brands, Core 10 and Daily Ritual.

Don’t forget, you can do Amazon Prime Wardrobe and try before you buy.

Amazon Essentials Women’s French Terry Fleece Pullover Hoodie (size medium) // This hoodie is really soft and comfortable — perfect for throwing on with jeans and sneakers to go to your kid’s soccer game or band performance, a minor league baseball game, or to run errands on a Saturday.

For size reference, I’m wearing the medium, and it’s the perfect roomy but not oversized fit.

VERDICT: undecided, as I have something similar. If not, I’d totally keep it.

also wearing: Mother Looker Ankle Fray Skinny Jeans with Veja Esplar Sneakers

Core 10 Motion Tech Fleece Relaxed Fit Jogger Sweatpants (size small) // These sweatpants are thick and soft and comfortable, and I like the stripe up the side. I also like that they have the banded bottom, but they’re not super tight at the ankle. The small fits perfectly.

VERDICT: returning, only because I don’t really need them. I like them a lot!

also wearing: Under Armour Women’s UA HOVR Rise Training Shoes

Core 10 Icon Series ‘Scallop’ Mesh Yoga Racerback Tank (size small) // I’m always looking for new running and workout tops, and this racerback tank is perfect for gym workouts.

Obviously, I’d wear a racerback sports bra with this, but I like the mesh panel up the back and laser cut scallop details. The small fits me perfectly, or you could size up for a more relaxed fit.

VERDICT: keeping

Core 10 ‘Build Your Own’ Onstride Run 7/8 Crop Leggings (size medium) // These leggings are the 7/8 length, so they’re meant to be slightly cropped. I think they’re more flattering than the full-length ones.

The waistband is nice and flat and comes up high and holds you in (I got the medium waist version, and it’s high enough for me.) They have the vented panels behind the knees for comfort and breathability, which is a nice touch, and the material is soft but rather thin.

Prices vary depending on size and whether you select high or medium waist, but I paid $36 for these, which is a really good value in my opinion.

also wearing: Under Armour Women’s UA HOVR Rise Training Shoes

Amazon Essentials Women’s Sherpa-Lined Fleece Full-Zip Hooded Jacket (size medium) //Now this hoodie, I LOVE. It’s thick and soft, and lined with a plush polyester sherpa. It will be perfect this fall for outdoor football games (read: marching band performances) if it ever gets cold around here. It comes in other colors too.

VERDICT: keeping!

also wearing: J.Crew NYC T-shirt with Mother Looker Ankle Fray Skinny Jeans with Veja Esplar Sneakers

Core 10 Soft Cotton Modal French Terry Fleece Crossed Front Yoga Sweatshirt (size small) // This top is really fun — it’s soft and on the thinner side. I wish I’d sized up to a medium, though. It’s a little too snug for my liking.

VERDICT: returning, as I don’t really need it; but if I did, I’d exchange for a medium.

also wearing: Core 10 ‘Build Your Own’ Onstride Run 7/8 Crop Leggings with Under Armour Women’s UA HOVR Rise Training Shoes

Amazon Essentials Women’s Brushed Tech Stretch Popover Hoodie (size small) //I am obsessed with this top. Love, love, love. So so soft, love the fit, and the color is so pretty. It comes in other colors too.

VERDICT: keeping!

also wearing: Core 10 ‘Build Your Own’ Onstride Run 7/8 Crop Leggings

Core 10 Soft Pima Cotton Stretch V-Neck Yoga Short Sleeve T-Shirt (size medium) // I didn’t love this tee. It’s a little thin, tight for a medium, and the shirttail  hemline is pretty exaggerated. Also, the v-neck is cut lower on the front than I like. Still, it’s soft and stretchy and comfortable if you want to try it.

VERDICT: returning; don’t love it.

also wearing: Core 10 ‘Build Your Own’ Onstride Run 7/8 Crop Leggings

Shopbop Sale Try-Ons

I got my Shopbop sale order in yesterday. Pardon the ponytail hair, I hate to take pictures when I’m not done up the way I like, but I didn’t have a choice if I was going to include these in today’s post.

FYI, the sale has been extended through end of day tomorrow! You save 20% on any size order, and 25% on orders over $500 — the code is STOCKUP19.

This is a great time to purchase premium denim, designer shoes and bags, and luxury sweaters. See all my Shopbop Sale Favorites and best tips for shopping their sale.

AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans, 10 Years Defined (size 29) // I was drawn to these for the darker wash and frayed hems, as well as the 9.75″ rise and 27.5″ inseam. I was hoping they’d be a tad shorter, but I do like this length. I feel like I wear my Rag & Bone Cates soooo much, it would be nice to have another option that is similar but a little different.

These have the amazing AG fit and feel — the denim is so soft, it feels like a second skin. I’m kind of over the legging ankle style, after all these years of wearing them almost exclusively. I still wear my grey and black ones a lot, and I have the one blue pair with the raw hem that I’m keeping, but I these days I’m finding the higher rises to be more comfortable (and more current).

FYI, the Shopbop pair is low inventory, but Nordstrom has a similar AG Farrah on sale, if you’re interested.

VERDICT: keeping!

also wearing: Vince Step Hem Cashmere Sweater and Sam Edelman Lior Loafers

I also ordered this black pair of Mother Insider crop flares to try because I kind of liked the lighter blue pair I featured in the Revisiting Kick Fares post, but we all agreed the lighter color seems more summery. I thought maybe playing around with a black pair would be fun.

Here they are with sock booties . . .

MOTHER The Insider Crop Jeans, Not Guilty (size 29) // These are a stiff denim, not as comfortable as the other Mother Insiders I have, but I think I like the fit . . . I mean, if I’m ever going to like a kick flare. I think the sweater needs a front-tuck to get a better balance, but I’m still not loving this silhouette.

VERDICT: returning for now… I just can’t get excited about these.

PAIGE Zaya Tee (size medium) // I had a Paige tee I loved a few years back — I think I got it during the #NSale, and it was the softest tee ever and had the most amazing drape. (Now that I think about it, it probably had a lot of rayon in it.) Anyway, I ordered this one, hoping it would be a similar fabric, but alas, it is not. It is also very low-cut, so not really working for me there.

VERDICT: returning

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Steve Madden Flavor Mules

Theory Adrianna Cashmere Sweater (size small) // I only have one picture of this sweater because I was in a rush to get somewhere, and the minute I threw it on, I knew it was too low-cut for me.

Otherwise, it’s an absolutely gorgeous sweater in a thinner knit that would be nice for those with milder winters who still love to wear cashmere. FYI, it also comes in navy and ivory.

VERDICT: Returning because of the neckline.

Trunk Club Unboxing + Try On Sesh

Next up, I got a new box from Trunk Club this week! I’m on an every-other-month schedule, and I asked for casual fall clothes and shoes.

For those not familiar with Trunk Club, it’s a subscription service owned by Nordstrom. You can set your schedule and get regular shipments, or you can just ask for one when you’re ready. There’s a $25 styling fee that is waived if you make a purchase, and you don’t pay for anything you don’t keep. You also earn Trunk Club credits (money to spend) by referring friends.

I love that you get to know your stylist, you can talk to her on the phone or email back and forth, and she will usually honor your budget and style requests, although sometimes they do like to push you out of your comfort zone a bit. Still, it’s a nice risk-free way to try new brands.

Speaking of which, Erin sent me Gucci loafers to try this month. 🙈 While I will make a luxury purchase from time to time, I’ve never paid this much for a pair of shoes. I was curious, though, so of course I tried them!

Gucci Princetown Loafer Mule (size 8.5) // These are the popular Princetown mules — I know not all of you like loafer mules, but I love the style. I feel like they’re a little more feminine than traditional loafers, and they seem more modern to me as well.

While these are gorgeous, the red is a bit much for me. If I were to splurge on a luxury shoe, I’d go for a more versatile neutral. They also have a very high vamp, and I can’t say I love them as much as I thought I would. Phew!

VERDICT: going back

Gucci Brixton Convertible Loafer (size 8) // She also sent the Brixton — a convertible loafer. These are extremely comfortable, ohmyword…

Because the back is meant to be pushed down when you wear them as a mule, it’s a very soft, supple leather, making them super comfortable against the back of your ankle when you wear them as loafers.

I like these a lot, but I feel like the black is kind of harsh. Since they’re a menswear-inspired style, they already have a masculine vibe, and the black color makes me feel like I’m wearing my dad’s shoes. I think I’d like them better in the ivory or a pretty taupe — or even that red, although again, it’s pretty bold for me.

VERDICT: going back. I just can’t justify the price since I don’t absolutely love them, even though I have a lot of Trunk Club credits sitting there and I know they’re a classic I’d have forever . . . can you tell I’m still trying to talk myself out of them? Haha! No, really. They’re going back.

Sam Edelman Lior Loafer (size 8) // This shoe is Sam Edelman’s attempt to be “inspired” by the Gucci Brixton — it’s what I would call a high quality imitation.

While it doesn’t have the craftsmanship of the Gucci, it’s still a quality shoe, and I like this color a lot. It’s also very comfortable with a soft leather upper and a padded footbed. They still have a masculine vibe, but I think they’re a nice alternative to ballet flats, which sometimes seem a little too precious.

VERDICT: keeping!

also wearing: Vince Step Hem Cashmere Sweater and AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans

Splendid Everette Mix Media Top (size medium) // This white top is cute, and a nice transition piece for this in-between weather season. It’s flattering and cute, and the curved hem doesn’t really bother me. I like the way it’s cut. There are some nice details with the button cuffs on the sleeves, and it’s a nice quality cotton/rayon blend.

VERDICT: going back; I just can’t get excited about it for whatever reason.

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Gucci Princetown Loafer Mules

Halogen Wool & Cashmere Long Cardigan (size small) // This sweater is absolutely gorgeous, and it should be for the price! It’s a lot for a Halogen piece, but I guess it’s a lot of cashmere. The color is versatile and very pretty, and it’s sublimely comfortable. I like the long ribbed cuffs and the drapey pockets.

I love it from the front and sides, but when I look at the back view, I feel like I’m wearing a bathrobe.

VERDICT: going back; I just don’t think I’d wear it enough to get a good ROI (return on investment).

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Steve Madden Flavor Mules

J.Crew Everyday Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater (size small) // If you’re looking for a classic cashmere turtleneck, this is a good one. It has a split hem, traditional shoulder seams (no drop shoulder nonsense), and a flattering 23″ length. It’s super soft and a nice quality knit.

VERDICT: undecided, as I really prefer sweaters with more interesting details . . . still, this could be a great wardrobe staple this winter.

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Sam Edelman Lior Loafers

Sanctuary Venice Hoodie (size medium) // I love the relaxed fit or this hoodie, and it’s a nice, thick fabric. For my casual lifestyle, this could come in very handy this fall and winter! I just don’t love the camo print — I know it’s trending, but I’m kind of over it. I might keep an eye out for a solid version.

VERDICT: going back

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Franco Sarto Dingo Leather Booties

Halogen Lace Yoke Blouse (size medium) // This blouse is really pretty, and this style is trending this fall. It also comes in purple and ivory, and I think the ivory would be really pretty if it’s not too sheer. (The black isn’t sheer at all.)

I like it, it’s different for me . . . I’m just not sure how much I’d wear it.

VERDICT: undecided; I need to see how it looks under a moto jacket, as I’d be too cold to wear it by itself after the weather cools down.

Alex Mill Wool Blend Henley Sweater (size medium) // This sweater is suuuuuper soft, and a very nice quality. I like the details, it’s different for sure!

VERDICT: Undecided, not sure it’s my best look.

also wearing: AG Farrah Skinny Ankle Jeans and Gucci Princetown Loafer Mules

Vince Weekend V-Neck Cashmere Sweater (size small) // Back in my comfort zone with a v-neck cashmere sweater! This sweater is more burgundy than plum, not sure why it leans purple in these pictures. I even tried to fix it in Lightroom, and I couldn’t.

This sweater is gorgeous, but it’s very plain. Definitely a great basic, if you need that, and it will last forever.

VERDICT: probably returning, don’t really need it, and I prefer a sweater with more interesting details.

And that’s a wrap!

I have to say, I’m a little meh about this try-on haul. I don’t know if I just have sale exhaustion from all the sales going on right now, or if I’m weary of trying on fall clothes when the weather is still too warm to wear them, or what . . . but I’m not terribly excited about anything in this post.

What about you? Anything here really calling to you? Or are you all set for now?

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Fall/Winter Fashion

Fall Trends to Try: Flare Jeans Now & Later

Happy Friday, friends, and cheers to the weekend! Today I’m teaming up with Cyndi Spivey to style another trend for now and later, and today we’re bring flares back! Although I’m cheating a bit, as mine are technically bootcut jeans.

When I asked on Instagram if people are into flares, 75% said no, so . . .  I’m not sure how many of you even want to see me style these pants, but we’re doing it anyway!

These are the AG Angel bootcut jeans, which I found at Nordstrom last spring, although my exact wash is only on Amazon now it’s the 17 Years Ceaseless Destructed. And there’s a pair in a very similar wash (a little less distressing) on sale at Shopbop the sale ends tonight, and the code is STOCKUP19.

I sized down to the 28, which is a bit snug in the waist, but I was afraid the 29 would be too big in the thighs.

These are obviously a very casual wash, so I decided to style a more casual look with them something I’d wear for running errands, to go to my one of daughter’s band performances, or to hang out with friends on the weekend.

The issue with bootcut jeans, of course, is that they require your shoes to have a very specific heel height.

I always get my bootcut jeans hemmed to wear with heels because I think they’re most flattering that way, so that made it even harder to create a casual look, but I found these Vince Camuto Gigietta booties in my closet, and I think they’re perfect.

(There are more sizes at VinceCamuto.com, by the way. Mine are Tortilla Suede, and I recommend sizing up half.)

The Western styling makes them more casual than most of my other booties certainly more casual than pumps or my peep-toe sandals and the pointy heel helps elongate the leg, which coupled with extra length of the bootcut jeans gives you legs for days!

These booties have a 3-3/4″ heel heel, which is the height of heel I brought with me when I had my jeans hemmed. A lot of my heels are in that 3-3/4″ 4″ range, so I knew I’d have some options.

This is a comfortable heel for me, but of course you can wear lower heels with bootcut jeans and flares . . . just be sure to have them hemmed accordingly.

FIT TIP: Ideally, your flares will be 1/4″ — 1/2″ off the ground, with shoes on.

To keep the look casual, I styled these jeans with a graphic tee.

I’ve purchased a few graphic tees lately, but this one is my favorite for its wider neckline and flattering fit, and it’s a nice quality slub cotton.

I also fell in love with the NYC skyline with the red embroidered Manhattan. Living in Philly, I end up in NYC a few times a year, and I love the energy and pace of the city, so I thought the tee was fitting.

For accessories, I wore this Lucky Brand bracelet, and I meant to bring these earrings.

I love Lucky Brand jewelry with my casual outfits, and the mixed metal look is very much on trend at the moment.

I carry all handbag styles, but a tote is always my favorite, and my taupe Everlane tote coordinates nicely with the booties they don’t match, but they go. #thankyoustacyandclinton

While I don’t typically hang around the house in 4″ heels, I like this elevated casual look for ball games, kid’s events, casual coffee dates, things like that.

To take my flares into winter, I basically just swapped out the tee for a sweater.

I also changed boots to a pair that’s darker and more conducive to wearing socks, although I’ll probably wear the Gigietta booties all winter, depending on the weather.

This camo sweater is from Anthropologie, and while it’s pricier than some, the quality is really outstanding, and I love the fit and feel.

Anthro does run sales from time to time; in fact, this sweater was on sale for a few days last week, so it’s one to watch if you like it and don’t want to pay full price. (Click the “Get Sale Alert” button below the picture in the shopping widget at the end of this post to receive an email when it goes on sale.)

This bag is an oldie but goodie, and it works in well with the polished but edgy vibe of this outfit.

The price seems to fluctuate (#amazonproblems) and I paid a lot less than it is currently going for, but even if I’d paid full price, the cost per wear would be mere pennies at this point.

And don’t be shocked, but I’m wearing a belt! I really like how it completes this look.

For many years you really didn’t see a lot of women wearing belts, and now they’re everywhere. Of course, the logo belts à la Gucci are the trend du jour, but I went for one that’s a more subtle.

This O ring belt by Rebecca Minkoff is a glossy but very soft leather, and for size reference, I needed the large.

My booties are Club Monaco. I saw them on another blogger a couple of years ago and stalked them until they went on sale. They’re gorgeous, but they don’t seem to have a similar style this season, so I hunted down a few other options.

These are similar, but with a lower heel for those who want that; and these are a good option for a more budget-conscious pair. I also like this pair, and this pair looks amazing if you prefer leather. (The last two are on sale at Shopbop through end of day.)

The only other thing I’d add to this “later” outfit is my black leather jacket. Besides the extra warmth, it would make a great completer piece to this simple look.

I’m excited to see flares and bootcut jeans becoming more popular again, although I’ve yet to see the ladies in my neck of the woods wearing them. I’m still very much in skinny jean country, but I don’t see trends taking off here as early as they do in more urban areas.

I’m curious if you’re seeing a resurgence of flares and bootcut jeans where you live. I do love my skinnies, but it’s nice to have other options.

How about you? Are you ready to rock the flares?

Outfit Details:

AG Angel Bootcuts (on sale at Shopbop) // NYC tee // taupe booties // taupe tote // camo sweater // similar black sock booties (more below) // black satchel // O-ring belt // sunnies c/o Maui Jim

Be sure to visit Cyndi and see how she’s styling flares for now and later!

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

Budget-Friendly Date Night Look

Happy Friday Eve, my friends! This week has been a bit of a doozie, and I’m definitely ready for the weekend. Today I’m teaming up with Walmart to bring you a budget-friendly date night look featuring one of fall’s biggest trends — animal print.

I set out to put together the type of look I like to wear when going out with my husband or girlfriends on the weekends. You know me, I’m all about pairing a fun top with jeans, and when it’s cool enough, I like to top it off with a fitted jacket.

This leopard print cami creates the perfect focal point for this outfit. It does require a strapless bra, or you can just leave your jacket on and not worry about that (which is what I do.)

This open front blazer is a great little completer piece that can take you from the office to dinner. It’s lightweight enough to keep on when you’re inside, and it has a really flattering shape to it.

I also like that ruching detail on the 3/4 length sleeves. For size reference, I’m wearing the small in both the cami and blazer.

These black skinny jeans are by Levi’s, and I wanted the 8 Short so they would be ankle length, but only the 8 Regular was available, so I actually cut them off to make them the right length.

My photographer, Alison, even showed me how to roughen up the edge a bit so they didn’t look just cut clean off. With raw hem jeans being on trend right now, this is a great little “tailoring” hack if you don’t want to spend the money or time on alternations.

I’m always a sucker for an open toe bootie this time of year, and this vegan suede pair is a nice alternative to pricier leather and suede booties.

With a 3″ stacked heel, these shoes are very comfortable to walk in, and the top of the shaft is soft against my leg.

I accessorized with a Lucky Brand bracelet and earrings, and I carried this O-ring clutch. This clutch also comes in snake print, by the way!

This outfit is perfect for a night out on the town, and each piece is easily mix and matchable with other components in your wardrobe.

If you’re looking for stylish and budget-friendly clothing options, don’t forget to check out Walmart. You just might be surprised by how much they have to offer, and they also have free 2-day shipping on eligible orders over $35.

Outfit Details:

leopard cami // open front blazer // black Levi’s skinnies // vegan booties // double drop earrings // two-tone bracelet // convertible crossbody

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photos: Alison Cornell


Fall Activewear Refresh with Under Armour

I was talking to a friend the other day, and we realized school has been back in session for over a month, now! File this in the “time flies” category.

Summer was a blip, and when school started back up the week before Labor Day, I was so not ready; but now that the school year is in full swing, I have to admit that I’m enjoying the return to routine. It helps that we’ve had absolutely glorious weather so far.

As the weather starts to cool off, the summer clothes that got the kids through the first few weeks are no longer cutting it, so we’ve been slowly updating their fall wardrobes.

My son is all about athletic gear, so when Under Armour reached out about partnering on another post, he was all for it.

He’s in college now, and he still pretty much lives in activewear. It works for him because he often plays a pickup game of basketball after classes, and he works with a high school marching band, so performance fabrics are ideal for the variable weather conditions he has to deal with.

A typical boy, he rarely wears a coat, so he loves this UA Rival fleece hoodie in the Academy/Black combo.

It’s made of ultra-soft cotton-blend fleece, plus it’s moisture wicking so dries fast as it gets wet, and it’s also a great layering piece that keeps him warm throughout most of our Pennsylvania winters.

And he’s still loving his HOVR Rise trainers.

We recently picked up this medium duffle — it’s perfect for his weekend visits home. It holds all his laundry and then some, plus if he wants to take it to the gym, it has a large vented pocket for his shoes.

And he’s still loving the durable UA Hustle 4.0 backpack for carrying his books and other essentials.

In addition to multiple compartments and adjustable HeatGear shoulder straps for comfort, it has a convenient soft-lined laptop sleeve that holds his 15″ computer.

Outfit Details:

UA Rival fleece hoodie // men’s UA WG woven pants // men’s HOVR Rise trainers // UA Hustle 4.0 backpack // UA Undeniable medium duffle

As for me, I always like to refresh my workout gear and loungewear when the weather changes.

I recently picked up these Armour fleece pants and this UA Hustle fleece crew.

This sweatshirt is made of the softest fleece, and I love the unfinished hem and neckline. I’m wearing a small, for reference.

Underneath, I’m wearing this UA Whisperlight tie back tank (also a size small.)

It’s perfect for gym workouts or yoga, when you’re going to be sweating a lot. Then I can throw my sweatshirt on overtop to drive home or to run errands after the gym if need be.

These fleece pants are the softest, and they feel so good to pull on after a workout, or just to hang out at home those days when I’m feeling lazy. I’m wearing the medium, my usual size for athletic pants.

Finally, I added these HOVR trainers to my sneaker collection.

I’ve already worn them a few times to my weight training workouts, and they’re so cushy and comfortable, but I also love that they’re cute enough to pair with jeans and a casual tee or sweatshirt for an amusement park or sightseeing.

If you’re looking to update your workout wardrobe or outfit your kids for school this fall, definitely check out Under Armour. The quality and style can’t be beat.

Outfit Details:

UA Whisperlight tie back tank // UA Hustle fleece crew // Armour fleece pants // women’s HOVR trainers

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Fall/Winter Fashion

My Daily Looks: What I Wore

Well, friends, it’s that time again! Every other week, I share my real-life outfits from the past two weeks, and today I’ve got a slew of them!

Our weather’s been up and down so there’s quite a mix of summer and fall in this post.

(For anyone who’s been paying attention, this post is usually on Wednesdays, but I had to swap with a sponsored post that didn’t get approved in time to go live today.)

Big Sales to Shop This Week

Before we get started, there are a bunch of sales right now that I want to call to your attention.

Tory Burch is having her Fall Event with savings up to 30% off (see my Tory Burch Favorites here), and Rebecca Minkoff is having a Buy More, Save More Sale with savings up to 35% off (see my Rebecca Minkoff Favorites here.)

Also, Bloomingdale’s just launched their own Buy More, Save More Event with savings up to 25% off, and there’s the Lord + Taylor Buy More, Save More Sale with savings up to 40%. Don’t forget that Nordstrom price matches if you find the exact same item on their site.

And then LOFT has 40% off full price tops and sweaters  today(I think my LOFT Favorites page is pretty up to date), and J.Crew has 30% off your purchase plus an extra 10% off that. The turtleneck dress and rollneck sweater from last week’s Try-On Haul are included.

Okay, let’s get started!

My Daily Looks: What I Wore the Past 2 Weeks

This first look is one I wore on a casual day at home. Judging from the curled hair and full face of makeup, I’m assuming I had a photoshoot with Alison that morning, and I probably ran some errands or something since I’m wearing lace-up shoes and jewelry.

AE camo tee // Gap shorts // Veja sneakers // Lagos necklace

The next outfit is what I wore to Bible study that week. It was warm, so I tried to bring this floral blouse into fall by pairing it with grey jeans.

Unfortunately my exact jeans sold out (or there is like one size left) because I love them. I did round up a few other options — this Frame pair is the most similar and has the same inseam and leg opening measurements, but they’re pricey. I really like the wash on this AG Farrah, but they are 2 inches longer than mine. On the plus side, they’re on sale. This AG Prima is a lighter grey and has a wider leg, and this BlankNYC pair looks like a good budget option.

I like how the shoes bookend this look, bringing a lighter shade from the blouse to the bottom of my outfit. By the way, the Goan Sand is not included in the Tory Burch Fall Event, but many of the Minnie flats are. Look for the ones labeled: “Included in the fall event”.

My jewelry is from White House Black Market, but it sold out online. They have a lot of pretty pieces, and many are on sale.

floral tee // grey AG legging ankle jeans (similar/option/option/budget option) // Tory Burch Minnie flats // Everlane tote (taupe) // sunnies c/o Maui Jim

On Friday night, I met a girlfriend for happy hour, and I threw on this burgundy ruffle blouse with my favorite dark wash blue jeans and peep-toe perforated booties/sandals. The jacket is not online, unfortunately, and my exact jeans have sold out, so I linked similar.

ruffle blouse // similar Rag & Bone skinnies (budget option) // peep-toe sandals // similar moto jacket // Kendra Scott earrings

And here you can see the look without the jacket. (I took it off inside the restaurant.)

ruffle blouse // similar Rag & Bone skinnies (budget option) // peep-toe sandals // Kendra Scott earrings // mini boho cuff c/o Victoria Emerson

I wore this to PorchFest — a local music festival. I wanted to be casual but put together.

I finally decided to keep the Vince snake print sneakers, and I’ve been wearing them a ton lately. If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly alternative, the Steve Madden Gills in the Taupe Snake just went on sale — they’re 50% off at Zappo’s and 40% off at Nordstrom.

graphic tee // AG Prima skinnies (budget option) // Vince snake print sneakers (budget option) // similar crossbody // Lucky Brand earrings // wrap bracelet c/o Victoria Emerson // sunnies c/o Maui Jim

Then I wore this next outfit to church two Sundays ago.

I’ve featured this stripe blouse a couple times on the blog, but for church I paired it with black jeans and black suede peep-toe sandals — FYI, these sandals are 30% off at both Macy’s and L+T.

I’m loving this bag that I picked up on sale a few weeks back. Unfortunately it sold out online, but you can put in your zip code and maybe find it at a store near you.

stripe blouse // AG ankle legging jeans (similar for 30% off) // peep-toe sandals (also at L+T; 30% off) // Tory Burch shoulder bag (store only) // Stella & Dot X cuff (eBay only) // mixed metal earrings

This was a Monday, and I kept it casual with this colorblock tee from the #NSale and my new Under Armour sneakers. I double cuffed the jeans to allow a little more leg to show.

colorblock tee (sold out) // AG Prima skinnies (budget option) // Under Armour trainers

I wore this next outfit after a photo shoot with Alison last Tuesday. It was starting to heat up, so I grabbed this black tank out of the back of my closet. I like this look for these hot fall days… which don’t seem to be going away anytime soon!

black tank // AG Prima skinnies (budget option) // Vince snake print sneakers (budget option) // D Yurman bracelet (budget option)

I think I mentioned that my daughter and I joined a community chorus, and this is what I wore to the first rehearsal. We were having some gloriously cool, crisp fall-like weather, so I brought out this lightweight long-sleeve tee and my snake print booties.

snap cuff tee // similar Rag & Bone skinnies (budget option) // snake print ankle boots (option/budget option) // Lucky Brand necklace and earrings

The next day was Bible study, and I guess I wore my grey jeans two weeks in a row. I didn’t realize that until I put this post together. #ooops

thermal waffle tunic // grey AG legging ankle jeans (similar/option/option/budget option) // snake print ankle boots (option/budget option) // Everlane tote (taupe) // Anna Beck necklace // Lucky Brand earrings // wrap bracelet c/o Victoria Emerson

I’m not sure where I wore this next outfit — probably to run errands and things on Friday.

And here’s a side view with my bag . . . although I’ve decided to return this bag. I love big bags, but I feel like this one looks overwhelming on me.

graphic tee // Mother Looker skinnies // Vince snake print sneakers (budget option) // Lucky Brand earrings and bracelet // Rebecca Minkoff Kate tote

And this is what I wore on Friday night for dinner and a movie with Paul. It was quite warm, but I wore the jacket anyway and took it off inside the restaurant. I kept it on in the movie theater, though.

(I often get asked if I wear my moto jackets as outerwear or as a part of my outfit, and I would say the answer is both. It just depends on the situation, where I am, the temperature, etc.)

leather jacket // red tank // similar AG jeans (15% off; budget option) // snake print flats // Lucky Brand necklace

I really wish I had a picture of Saturday night’s outfit for going out to dinner. I meant to recreate it and take one before this post went up. I wore the NYC graphic tee with blue jeans, my snake print booties, and the grey leather jacket. It was cute! Maybe I’ll shoot the look with Alison tomorrow.

And this last outfit is what I wore to church on Sunday.

floral tie neck shell // denim jacket // grey AG legging ankle jeans (similar/option/option/budget option) // peep-toe sandals // Lagos necklace // D Yurman bracelet (budget option)

Finally, I posted these booties yesterday to Instagram with a swipe-up link in my Story, but if you don’t like to shop from your phone, I wanted to give you the link here as well. You can also find them on Zappo’s. They’re very comfortable and have a lot of padding in the footbed if you need that.

And that’s a wrap! I realize I didn’t include many sizing notes, so feel free to ask if you have any questions.

I hope you all have a terrific Tuesday!

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Fall Sephora Haul

Let’s take a break from fashion and talk about fall beauty finds for a minute.

I don’t always change up my makeup with the seasons, but I usually re-evaluate my skincare needs. I recently placed a Sephora order for some new hair and skincare products I wanted to try.

This time of year, my skin is always a bit dry and dull. I guess it’s the result of the summer sun and getting lazy with my skincare routine. I decided to try the Bakuchiol Retinol Alternative Smoothing Serum by Herbivore — one of Sephora’s clean beauty brands.

Bakuchiol is an all-natural botanical that acts like retinol, so this serum is a natural, plant-based retinol alternative that smooths the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and visibly fights signs of aging without any sensitizing or irritating effects.

This serum comes with a dropper, and you simply rub it between your hands and pat it into your face after cleansing. It feels moisturizing and soothing, and it has little to no scent.

I love the idea of a retinal alternative, so I’m curious to see how my skin looks and feels after using this product for a few weeks.

Another green beauty product I’m testing out is this Farmacy Makeup Removing Cleansing Balm.

I love a cleansing balm for removing makeup, and this product has a lovely clean, fresh scent. Best of all, it practically melts away your makeup, leaving your skin clean and smooth.

You simply apply to dry skin and use your fingertips to massage all over your face and neck, then wipe off with a warm, damp washcloth. It leaves your skin clean and ready for the next step in your nightly skincare routine.

I’m also trying out this Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask. I’ve shared before that I always seem to have dry lips, and I’ve tried tons of products over the years with varying degrees of success.

This product is a leave-on lip mask that soothes and moisturizes overnight, resulting in smoother, more supple lips.

So far, I like it. The balm-like texture absorbs quickly, and I feel like it really coats my lips and works all night to lock in moisture.

When I wake up, my lips are soft and smooth and not as flaky as normal, and it has a pleasant light berry scent to it.

It’s not just our skin that starts getting dry this time of year; our hair can also suffer the effects of summer sun and cooler fall temperatures.

My hair is already fine and thin, and it’s also color treated, so it tends to dry out and get lighter on the ends at the end of the summer. I decided to try this Moroccanoil Color Depositing Mask because it deposits temporary color while nurturing hair for a healthier look and feel. #yesplease

You can choose from like 7 different colors, and you just apply it to clean, towel-dry hair. Leave in for 5 — 7 minutes, rinse, and style as usual. The result is glossy, shiny hair with a hint of color.

Since my hair is already dark and I used the rich medium brown, I didn’t notice a big difference in color, but it definitely felt smoother and looked shinier and healthier after my first use.

In addition to these newer products I’m trying out, Sephora also carries a lot of my tried and true favorites.

Also shown in the picture below are my favorite concealer and my triple threat for amazing eyelashes — Givenchy eyelash primer, Lancôme Hypnose Drama full body mascara, and Benefit They’re Real Mascara (this is a 2-piece set.)

Not pictured, but another tried and true favorite available at Sephora, is my NARS blush.

The best part about shopping at Sephora for beauty and skincare products is their Beauty Insider program, where you can earn points to apply to future purchases in addition to seasonal savings, gifts, early access to products, and more. Sign up here to become a member of their rewards program.

What are you doing to change up your skincare routine this fall? Let us know if you found any great products!

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

How to Wear Statement Shoes

Greetings, friends, and happy First Day of Fall!!!🍁🍂 Today we’re talking about how to wear statement shoes.

I got this question a while back, and I thought it would make a good post. In her words:

“I love funky shoes, but my problem is I buy them but then never wear them… I always second guess as to how/with what to wear them. I just never feel like I could pull it off without being self-conscious. I would bypass them for my old faithfuls every time!”

Can anyone relate?

Well, I hope this post helps! I rounded up a bunch of outfits that feature statement shoes, and we’re talking about what makes them work.

How To Wear Statement Shoes: I rounded up a bunch of outfits that feature statement shoes, and we're talking about what makes them work.

Before we get started, I just want to give y’all a heads-up that Tory Burch started her Fall Sale today! You can save up to 30% with code FALL. I’ll put together a Favorites page for The Shop with all my top picks.

How to Wear Statement Shoes

I’m going to start with my usual disclaimer: I think you have to take into account your personality, lifestyle, the area in which you live, and what type of pieces make up the most of your wardrobe when deciding on purchasing a pair of statement shoes.

It’s one thing to be drawn to a bold red shoe or a fun snake print, but if they don’t work with your lifestyle and your wardrobe, you probably won’t wear them much.

My wardrobe is made up largely of solids and neutrals, so a statement shoe is a great way to add texture or color to a plain outfit. That said, I live a very casual life with the occasional “date night” thrown in the mix, so I’m more likely to get a good cost per wear out of casual statement shoes than dressy ones.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print Booties

I purchased these snake print booties last fall, and I styled them a few times for the blog, but I think I only actually wore them twice. This picture is from last Thanksgiving . . . I wore this outfit to my brother’s house for dinner.

Snake Print booties with grey jeans and a, burgundy sweater

old burgundy sweater // similar grey jeans // snake print booties

I think I wore them one other time, but I can’t find a picture. I also styled them twice for the blog . . . first with the same grey jeans, a pink sweater, and a black leather jacket.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print booties with grey jeans, black jacket, and pink sweater

old leather jacket // pink turtleneck // similar grey jeans // snake print booties

And then with blue jeans, an ivory sweater, and a taupe moto jacket.

While these outfits aren’t made up entirely of neutrals, they are made up of solids, and I like how the snake print adds texture and pattern to the simple looks in a way a plain black or taupe shoe would not.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print booties with bluejeans, ivory sweater, and taupe suede moto jacket

similar taupe moto // old ivory sweater // blue jeans // snake print booties

I did end up passing those boots on at the end of last season. Although they were gorgeous, they weren’t very comfortable, and I just didn’t find myself wearing them very much.

But this year, I grabbed this pair of Jeffrey Campbell snake print booties during the #NSale, and I’ve already worn them 4 or 5 times!

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print booties with bluejeans and a grey top

grey snap cuff tee // blue jeans // snake print booties

You can see that my tendency is to pair them with neutrals . . .

similar grey cardigan // black tank // similar grey jeans // snake print booties

Snake Print booties with bluejeans and ivory sweater

ivory sweater // chewed hem jeans // snake print booties

But not always . . .

waffle knit tunic // similar grey jeans // snake print booties

Why have I worn these snake print booties so much more than the other pair? For one thing, these booties are sooooo much more comfortable. But they also have a more casual styling that makes them work better with my casual wardrobe.

I think that black heel in the Dolce Vita pair as well as the high contrast within the snake print made them feel dressier and more difficult to style.

The color palette in this Jeffrey Campbell pair is more muted, so I don’t feel quite so conspicuous wearing them . . . although I will tell you, every single time I’ve worn them, I’ve had multiple comments on them. They definitely make a statement.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print Booties

And trust me, I’m as annoyed as you are that they’re sold out in this color. If you like them, I recommend looking at this pair, this pair, or this pair.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print Sneakers

I’m also having a lot of fun with my snake print slip-on sneakers. In fact, it was a pair of snake print sneakers that inspired the question that prompted this post.

I tried a few different styles and hemmed and hawed for several days before finally deciding to make an investment in the Vince pair.

Again, because I live a very casual lifestyle, and most of my clothes are solids and neutrals, I find myself reaching for these often.

They really elevate a casual look, and make it current and interesting and fun.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print sneakers with blue jeans and graphic tee

graphic tee // skinny jeans // Vince slip-on sneakers

You’ll see that I mostly wear them with jeans, t-shirts, and maybe a jacket on top if the weather permits.

Snake Print sneakers with grey tee, black jeans, and denim jacket

grey tee // denim jacket // black jeans // Vince slip-on sneakers

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print sneakers with blue jeans and graphic tee

graphic tee // blue jeans // Vince slip-on sneakers

Snake Print sneakers with jean shorts and white sweatshirt

white sweatshirt // old jean shorts // Vince slip-on sneakers

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print sneakers with blue jeans and black tank

black tank // blue jeans // Vince slip-on sneakers

A more budget-friendly option is this Steve Madden pair. They come in two different options — taupe snake and natural snake.

I like the looks of these a lot, they just didn’t fit my foot well. I also prefer the lower vamp on the Vince pair, but that wouldn’t have been a deal breaker if these had been a little more comfortable.

Snake Print sneakers with olive cargo joggers and black side tie tee

side tie tee // cargo jogger pants (budget option) // Steve Madden snake print sneakers in taupe snake

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Snake Print sneakers with a white tee and blue jeans

white tee // blue jeans // Steve Madden snake print sneakers in natural snake

And at the risk of beating the snake print shoe trend to death, I also have these snake print flats that I wore out to dinner and a movie on Friday night . . .

Snake Print flats with blue jeans, red tank, and grey leather jacket

leather jacket // red tank // similar jeans // snake print flats

But of course, snake print is not the only option for a statement shoe. Let’s move on!

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Leopard Print

Leopard print is another obvious choice for a statement shoe, and I’ve had both leopard print pumps and flats in my wardrobe for years.

The nice thing about leopard (and snake, for that matter) is that they’re patterns made up of neutral tones, so both can be worn as a neutral and paired with a variety of colors.

Here I wore leopard pumps with a black dress and carried a red bag.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: LBD with Leopard Pumps

Red and leopard are a bold pairing that has become rather predictable, but they really work. (All of the above items are out of stock, as that picture is from a few years ago.)

And here’s another oldie but goodie . . . mustard yellow sweater, black jeans, and leopard flats.

Leopard Flats with black jeans and mustard yellow sweater

When wearing a printed shoe, I often incorporate the colors from the shoe into my outfit.

I’m not sure I would have thought to pair mustard yellow with black if they hadn’t both been part of the print in these shoes, but the combo really works.

This outfit is similar, but the yellow sweater is a bit brighter, and I wore blue jeans instead of black.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Leopard Flats with yellow sweater and blue jeans

yellow sweater // blue jeans // similar leopard mules

Sometimes it’s fun to wear another color entirely, and let the shoes provide a contrast.

In this next look, I wore blue jeans and leopard mules with an olive green sweater. The olive creates a nice contrast against the warm neutral tones in the leopard print. Also note how the printed shoe elevates a very simple outfit and makes it more interesting.

Leopard Flats with olive sweater and blue jeans

And wearing neutrals with leopard is always a safe bet.

ivory turtleneck // blue jeans // leopard pumps

It’s fine to wear a contrasting color as well — sort of the way red and leopard work well together.

Last spring I paired leopard flats with blue jeans and a magenta top. I had a few people act surprised that I paired the leopard and magenta, but leopard is pretty much considered a neutral, and I think it works.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Leopard Flats with blue jeans and magenta top

And here’s a more casual look with leopard ballet flats . . . combining stripes and leopard is always fun, and the green vest is a nice contrast.

Leopard Flats with blue jeans, stripe tee, green vest

The same concept can be applied to plaid shoes.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Plaid

I recently added these plaid pumps to my closet, and I usually wear them with colors that are in the plaid — there are many to choose from.

Plaid Pumps with blue jeans and rust top

rust blouse // similar blue jeans // plaid pumps

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Plaid Pumps with blue jeans and ivory sweater

ivory sweater // chewed hem jeans // plaid pumps

Plaid Pumps with Rust Dress

rust dress / plaid pumps

Plaid loafers or mules or sneakers would work just as well. Again, it depends on your lifestyle and what you’ll wear the most.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Bold Hues

Statement shoes don’t need to be a print; they can also be bold colors. My favorites are red and bright pink, although I had some turquoise shoes for a while that were fun too.

Sam Edelman Hazel pumps are one of the most comfortable pumps I’ve ever worn, and they come in a myriad of colors. The ones I’m showing below are old, but there are plenty of new fun colors and patterns available.

Pink Pumps with white jeans, black top, and neck scarf

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Turquoise Pumps with white jeans and black and white blouse

White pumps can make a bold statement too . . .

And there’s always red . . .

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Red Pumps with black top and blue jeans

These red boots are amazing, and it’s a shame to hide them under bootcut jeans, but I found the shaft height awkward to wear with skinny jeans.

Red Booties

I guess I kind of like the idea of the red just peeking out below the hem of the jeans — it’s a more subtle way to wear red shoes, if that idea intimidates you.

Red Booties with blue jeans, black top, and taupe moto

similar taupe moto // black tank // bootcut jeans // red bootie options

If red feels too bold for you, consider burgundy. I love these burgundy suede pumps, and I often pair them with camel, grey, denim, and/or black during the winter months.

How to Wear Statement Shoes: Burgundy Suede Pumps with blue jeans, camel sweater, and black moto

camel sweater // raw hem skinny jeans // black leather jacket // L.K. Bennett Sersha pumps in Oxblood // leopard clutch

Or if you can’t do heels, burgundy suede flats are a nice item to have in your fall/winter wardrobe.

camel sweater // black vest // similar jeans // similar flats (ON SALE!)

So yeah, that’s a lot of outfits! I hope some of this is helpful.

At the end of the day, I would say there’s a statement shoe for every woman. I don’t think they should dominate your closet, but it’s fun to have at least one or two pairs to shake things up a bit. The key is finding the shoe that works best for your personal style aesthetic, your lifestyle, and your wardrobe. Good luck!

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This post contains affiliate links. When you shop through my links, it helps support my business (at no additional cost to you) so thank you!


Coffee Talk 09.22.19 ☕️

Good morning! I hope everyone is having a relaxing and refreshing weekend… or at least a productive one.

We’ve had a lot going on, but it’s been nice to be out and about doing fun things on such a pretty weekend. We’ve had the most gorgeous weather lately — sunny and dry and mild temperatures. Although our little fall respite seems to have ended, and we are headed back into the high 80s today.

I’m not about to complain, though. It will be cold soon enough. I enjoyed those few brisk days and had fun breaking out some of my fall clothes, but I’ll take a few days of warmer temps before they settle back down again, which they are sure to do. I love warm weather, and I’ll hold onto it as long as I can.

So how have we been enjoying this unseasonably warm weather? We went to see Downton Abbey on Friday night at an old neighborhood movie theater in downtown Phoenixville, and before that we grabbed dinner at a restaurant across the street. They had the front open to the street, and we could have had a table outside on the sidewalk, but we opted to sit inside beside the open wall/window.

Our food was a bit of a letdown, but the wine was good (I had a rosé) and it was a gorgeous night. We walked around for a bit afterwards before heading into the theater.

The movie was meh — sorry, I just didn’t love it. I know a lot of people did. There were some good one-liners (mostly between Violet and Isobel, of course) and they tried to tie up the storyline a bit at the end — at least with the Crawley family. But I could have done without the whole servant storyline, and even the stuff with the family seemed kind of contrived.

But I’m glad I saw it, I guess. At the very least, it was fun to go out and see a movie. We rarely go to the movie theater anymore.

Yesterday I did some work and we ran the kids around for various things, and I finally got to the garden store to buy some fall plants. I planted a few of my planters, and I need to finish up this afternoon.

I also think I need a few more plants. I want to go to a bigger place — maybe Lowe’s or Home Depot and see if I find some more variety.

Then last night we went to my daughter’s marching band performance, which was fun, and we met friends for dinner afterwards.

I try to eat healthy when we eat out, but last night I went for comfort food — meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans. It was so good, and totally worth the two pounds that showed up on the scale this morning. Haha!

If we go out after church today, I will be sure to get a salad. Meanwhile, I need to get myself ready to go running. I have plenty of carbs banked up from last night, so it should be a good run.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend! And for those of you down in Texas and other areas experiencing devastating flooding, I’m praying for no more rain. I hope at least everyone is safe.

Have a blessed Sunday!


Fall Try-On Haul: Amazon, Ann Taylor, J.Crew & Nordstrom

Greetings, friends! I’ve decided to move my weekly try-on hauls to Saturdays.

This Fall Try-On Haul is a random mix of odds and ends I’ve ordered from various retailers. I have a few graphic tees, some sweaters, a couple of tops, a sweater dress, and jeans. #yayfall

Fall Try-On Haul: Amazon, Ann Taylor, J.Crew & Nordstrom

Fall Try-On Haul

As always, descriptions and sizing info is below the pictures. For reference, I’m 5’5″ and 140-ish, and I wear a 6 or 8 (28 or 29) in pants, usually a small in tops, and an 8 in dresses.

J.Crew Turtleneck sweater dress in supersoft yarn (size small) // I’m always on the hunt for good sweater dresses in fall and winter. I love wearing them with tights and boots to church or other events that may crop up.

This one is super soft and very luxe, and it has a nice shape to it without being clingy or body-con at all. It’s a mix of merino wool, alpaca, and stretchy stuff.

I really like the blouson sleeves, that’s a fun detail, but they also add some visual weight right there at the hip area, so it’s a trade-off.

I paired it with sock booties for this try-on, and while that’s a great option that is very on-trend at the moment, I’ll more likely wear it with black tights and tall black boots. It also comes in jade green and a pretty shade of petunia pink.

The length is perfect for me at 5’5″, and it runs TTS. I’m in the small. It’s also 25% off right now with code THATWORKS.

VERDICT: Undecided; I like it, but I feel like I might find another one later on that I like better. Or maybe it’s just too early in the season to get excited about a turtleneck sweater dress.

J.Crew “NYC” T-shirt in slub cotton (size medium) // Also from J.Crew, this NYC tee is a nice slub cotton. I’m finding J.Crew tees to run small; I had to size up to a medium in this one.

It’s thin, but not suuuuper see-through thin, and the material is a trendy slub cotton. The NYC skyline is screen-printed, but the red Manhattan script is embroidered, which is a nice touch.

I like that the crew neckline isn’t as high as some, and the sleeve length is perfect. This is what I’d call a more up-scale graphic tee, and I really like it. This is one I’d pair with a skirt if I wanted to try that trend, and I think it will be cute layered under jackets this fall, but I also just like it worn alone with jeans for casual wear.

VERDICT: Keeping! Already wore it. (This tee is, unfortunately, not included in the J.Crew sale.)

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies and Söfft Tilton booties

Rebecca Minkoff O-Ring Buckle Leather Belt (size medium; need a large) // Finally got myself a belt! I thought this O-ring style was fun, and the leather is kind of shiny but very soft. I really like how it makes the look more finished — especially with a very casual tee.

Size-wise, I ordered a small and a medium, but I actually need a large. In this picture, I have the medium on the loosest setting.

VERDICT: Exchanging for a large.

Sub_Urban Riot Indoorsy Graphic Tee (size small) // I ordered this tee around the same time I ordered the Less Mondays More Sundays Graphic Tee from last week’s Try On Haul. I think it’s funny, and it’s very soft and comfortable. The grey is versatile too.

VERDICT: Keeping. Already wore it.

Sub_Urban Riot ‘Good Vibes’ Graphic Tee (size small) // I’ve been on a graphic tee kick lately, can you tell???

This is yet another grey tee that I ordered from Nordstrom. I like this Sub_Urban Riot brand a lot. Their tees are very soft and comfortable, and and they fit perfectly in a small.

While I like the Indoorsy concept better, I prefer the font and the word placement on this one. Alas, I do not need both, and I already wore the Indoorsy one, so this will probably go back.

If you like it, it’s 40% off today!

VERDICT: Returning, probably…

Sub_Urban Riot No Coffee No Talkee Graphic Tee (size small) // It is possible I went overboard with the graphic tees.  🙈

This one is fun too, same brand and size, but I like the black and how it’s more of an off-back than a super dark black.

VERDICT: Undecided; I like it better than the other black graphic tee, but I already wore that one, so probably returning.

J.Crew “Mon amour” graphic T-shirt (size medium) // Once again, I take a J.Crew graphic tee in a medium. This one is a nice weight, and again, the crewneck isn’t as high as some, so I feel like it’s fairly flattering. (Finding v-neck graphic tees is like finding a needle in a haystack!)

VERDICT: Returning, only because I don’t need 155 graphic tees, haha!

also wearing: Mother The Insider Cropped Flared Jeans (size 29; 30% off) or AG Prima Ankle Skinny Jeans (size 29; 33% off) and Veja Esplar Leather Sneakers (size 39)

J.Crew 1988 rollneck sweater in cotton (size small) // I had this sweater last year in the mustard yellow, and I liked it so much, I bought it this year in the pale blush. It comes in a slew of other colors, so check them out if you like it.

It fits true to size, and I feel like it’s a very flattering cut. I love the details in the knit, and the on-shoulder seaming, and the high/low hem doesn’t bother me too much because it’s subtle.  These classic styles are often excluded from J.Crew sales, but right now this one is 30% off with code THATWORKS.

STYLE TIPS: I styled this sweater two ways in the photos above — first untucked with the jeans uncuffed over a streamlined suede bootie, and then front-tucked with the jeans cuffed and snake print mules.

WHY? When I cuff the jeans, it makes my legs look shorter, so tucking the sweater also shortens the upper body, to keep a pleasing proportion. See the comparison shots here:

Also, I like the jeans cuffed with the mules, so as to show more of my ankles, which are typically the thinnest part of a woman’s leg. See the difference:

Conversely, with the booties, I kept them uncuffed and let them extend over the bootie so they create a long, lean leg line. Cuffing is okay too, but then I’d want to front-tuck the sweater.

VERDICT: Keeping!

also wearing: AG Prima Ankle Skinny Jeans (size 29; 33% off) and Vince Ridley booties (from last season, but a few sizes left at 50% off) or Splendid Hailee II Snake Embossed Western Mule (30% off)

J.Crew Long-sleeve everyday cashmere mockneck sweater in Burgundy (size small) // This sweater is gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous! And I like the shorter style that isn’t quite cropped — the perfect length for wearing with higher rise jeans. (At least, for me.)

VERDICT: It’s pricey, and not on sale, but I’m very tempted to keep it. For now, keeping tags on.

also wearing: AG Jodi Cropped Jeans (size 29; need a 30) and Club Monaco booties (old)

BP. High/Low Roll Edge Sweater (size small) // I was really impressed with the quality of this sweater when I pulled it out of the box — I don’t usually associate BP. with quality (not that it’s terrible, but it’s Nordstrom’s lowest price point and typically geared to juniors and young adults.) But this sweater feels super soft and silky. It is quite thin, though, so keep that in mind. I think I’d prefer the black.

It has a flattering ballet neckline with rolled edges and exposed seams, and I think it’s a really nice option for a lightweight sweater during this transition season.

In the pictures above, you can see it both front-tucked and untucked, and it works well both ways.

VERDICT: Returning because it’s so thin, but maybe ordering the black.

also wearing: Mother The Insider Cropped Flared Jeans (size 29; 30% off) and Vince Ridley booties (from last season, but a few sizes left at 50% off)

Caslon Dolman Sweater (size small) // This sweater is very similar to the one above, but it’s a little bit thicker. Once again, it has some nice seaming details and a flattering boatneck. I like the ballet neckline on the one above a little better, but this one is a dolman style rather than the drop shoulder, which I prefer. (I’m always a sucker for a dolman sweater!)

It’s typical Caslon quality – nice and soft, not super luxe, but a quality sweater at a good price point. I might prefer a size up for a little more drape, as shown on the Nordstrom website, but I do think it’s TTS. It also comes in black and a few other colors.

VERDICT: Keeping because it’s softer and warmer than the BP. one, and not as see-through.

Mother The Insider Cropped Flared Jeans (size 29) // Yikes, that rear view! But it is necessary. I never keep a pair of jeans without checking out the rear view.

We have analyzed these jeans up one side and down the other in my post on revisiting kick flares, but I figured they deserve their own feature in this Try-On Haul since I didn’t officially review them yet.

I do think these fit well and are fairly flattering for their intended style. I still feel a bit like Urkel wearing them… thanks to reader Heather for putting that image in my head! 🤣 They are verrrrry comfortable, I will give them that. The denim is thick and soft and stretchy but does not bag out.

You can’t go wrong with Mother denim, and they’re currently on sale. If you’ve been on the fence, now is the time to try them.

VERDICT: Undecided. For now I’m keeping the tags on.

Ann Taylor Button Cuff V-Neck Sweater in Cherry Cola (size small) // I ordered this sweater from Ann Taylor during their last sale in both burgundy and black.

The quality is really nice — the material is thick and almost heavy, if that makes sense. I love a dressier sweater like this for wearing to church and out to dinner in the fall and winter, and I also think this would make a nice work wear piece for those who need that.

I feel like the burgundy fits a tad smaller than the black. (See below.) It’s a bit snug, but not really body-con. I’m almost ready to order a medium to compare, but I never wear medium in AT sweaters, and I expect that would make it too long. I think this is how it’s supposed to fit (despite the way it looks on the model.)

The v-neckline is flattering and high enough to be modest, and the button cuff sleeves are a really nice detail. Also, the shoulder seams sit on the shoulder, thankyouverymuch! 

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Söfft Tilton booties (I probably would wear this sweater with dressier shoes, I just happened to have these on already.)

Ann Taylor Button Cuff V-Neck Sweater in Black (size small) // As I said above, I love the quality and the styling of this sweater, I’m just a bit unsure about the fit. I do love a black sweater, and this one fits more comfortable, so…

VERDICT: Undecided; definitely keeping one or the other. I love the “Cherry Cola” color, but I wish it had a bit more wiggle room.

Oh, and FYI, right now Ann Taylor is doing a promotion where you get 40% OFF 3+ , 30% OFF 2, 20% OFF 1 full price styles with code HELLOFALL.

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Steve Madden Flavor Flat Mules (size 8)

Chelsea28 Raw Edge Tank in Red Rumba (size small) // I ordered this tank in black, and I liked it so much I ordered it in this red and also the ivory.

It is rare for me to find a silky tank or cami that I can wear with a regular bra, and this one is PERFECTION. It will be great for layering under cardigans and moto jackets this fall, but I feel like it’s modest enough to wear alone. In fact, I wore it last night!

I rarely buy multiples, as I like each piece in my wardrobe to be unique, but this is such a great base layer for so many different looks that I felt like it was worth buying in several colors.

The price is a bit high for what it is, I will give you that, so I’ll keep the tags on until I wear them in case they go on sale.

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Vince Camuto Kimora Cutout Shield Sandals (size 7.5)

Chelsea28 Raw Edge Tank in Black (size small) // Here you can see how I would style the black one for a date night look.

Fit-wise, the small just fits me, it’s a tad snug across the bust, but I think the medium would be too big under the arms, so I’m keeping the smalls.

VERDICT: Keeping both.

also wearing: AG Angel Bootcut Jeans in 17 Years Ceaseless Destructed (size 28) and Sam Edelman Hazel Pumps (size 8) with Sam Edelman Lambskin Leather Moto Jacket (size small; 33% off)

AG Angel Bootcut Jeans in 17 Years Ceaseless Destructed (size 28) // I bought these last year, featured them in this Try-On Haul, and wore them for one post, but they were too long.

I finally got them hemmed!!! YAY ME! (I took them to Nordstrom, and they retained the original hem, so I don’t lose any of the character.)

Unfortunately, they may still be a little too long. OOPS! I thought I brought these shoes with me, but maybe I brought a pair with a heel that’s 1/2″ higher. Anyway, I will be wearing them mostly with boots, but I do like a good bootcut and pump combo. Maybe I’ll put them through the dryer one time and see if that does the trick. (I normally do not dry my jeans.)

Vince Camuto Rumpled Satin Blouse in Dark Willow (size small) // I thought this would be another nice piece for wearing alone or layering under a moto jacket. I don’t think it’s as flattering as the Chelsea28 tank, but it’s a nice option to have. I love this dark willow color, but it comes in at least 10 other great colors, and it is true to size.

I showed it above both front-tucked and untucked, and also with the brown jacket as an option for a layering piece.

VERDICT: Keeping.

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Louise et Cie Karas Pointy Toe Mule Pumps (size 8.5) with Sam Edelman Lambskin Leather Moto Jacket (size small; 33% off)

Daily Ritual 100% Cotton Chunky Long-Sleeve Crew Sweater in Olive (size small) // This sweater seems like nice quality for the price point; it’s thick and heavy and has a nice feel to it. I like the side slits and chunky knit ribbing at the cuffs and hem, but it’s just not very flattering on me. It’s bulky and adds visual weight.

It comes in a ton of colors, so if you like it, be sure to take a look! It’s very good quality for $29. While I’d say it runs true to size, you may want to size up for a slouchier fit.

VERDICT: Returning; I can do better, but I think it would be nice for a different body type.

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Steve Madden Flavor Flat Mules (size 8)

Daily Ritual Women’s 100% Cotton Mock-Neck Sweater in Lilac (size small) // Now, this I like a lot better. It’s a thinner knit, and it has a really nice feel to it. It’s lightweight so perfect for wearing right now (for those of us experiencing fall.) It still has some nice details, but it’s not as bulky.

It also comes in tons of colors, and for $29, I think it’s a great value.

VERDICT: Undecided; I like it, but don’t really need it.

also wearing: Rag & Bone Cate raw hem skinnies (size 28; 30% off) and Steve Madden Flavor Flat Mules (size 8)

Daily Ritual Women’s Lightweight Tie-Front Cardigan in Burgundy (size small) // This sweater is fun and different… remember when this style was all the rage??? It’s lightweight and has a nice slub texture to it — great for those in warmer climates. And this color is really pretty.

I’m undecided about the style, though, as it was very trendy at one point and now isn’t really something you see at all. Unless some of you are seeing it where you are? Is it coming back?

It’s true to size and a decent value for $34.

VERDICT: Returning; I can’t get excited about this style right yet.

also wearing: J.Crew NYC T-shirt with Mother Looker Looker Ankle Fray Skinny Jeans (size 29) and Steve Madden Flavor Flat Mules (size 8)

Caslon Open Front Pocket Cardigan in Beige Oatmeal (size small) // And we’re back to Caslon again! This is a cozy open-front cardigan with some nice ribbed details at the cuffs and hem. The pockets are placed well, and I like this shorter length for wearing under coats all winter long

It’s not exactly voluminous, but it’s not terribly flattering either. I think it’s due to the drop shoulder. This cardigan runs true to size and comes in some nice color choices.

VERDICT: Returning — the drop shoulders seal the deal. Maybe if the seams were on the shoulder, it would be more flattering overall.

also wearing: J.Crew NYC T-shirt with Mother Looker Looker Ankle Fray Skinny Jeans (size 29) and Steve Madden Flavor Flat Mules (size 8)

Rebecca Minkoff Kate Soft Tote // This is a random add-on here at the end, but this bag just came yesterday and I was dying to try it out. I’ve had my eye on this bag, and then Rebecca Minkoff started a Buy More, Save More Sale so I snagged it.

I really like the super soft leather and how it stands on its own. It’s leather lined on the inside too, and has a pocket on the side that can hold a water bottle or your cell phone. The strap drop is perfect for throwing over your shoulder and accessing the contents with one strap still on the shoulder.

But in looking at these pictures, it is verrrrry large. Which I like for practical use, but does it look too big? I mean, I like big bags… #icannotlie

So, yeah… I’m still a bit undecided on this one. See all my Rebecca Minkoff Sale Favorites.

also wearing: J.Crew NYC T-shirt with Mother Looker Looker Ankle Fray Skinny Jeans (size 29) and Vince Blair Snake-Print Sneakers (size 7.5)

Anthro Sale!

Also, Anthropologie is running a 20% off sale for all Anthroperks members (it is free to join.)

A few items from last week’s Try-On Haul are included…

Anthropologie Ethan Camo Sweater (size small) // This is a gorgeous sweater, very soft and comfortable, and I love the color palette. I’ve tried it with a few other denim options this week, and I’ve decided to keep it — although I might reach out about a price adjustment.

also wearing: AG legging ankle jeans with similar espadrilles

T.La Vicky Thermal Waffle Tunic (size small) // I really like this waffle tunic for the in-between weather we’re experiencing right now. I kept the terra cotta, and I’ve already worn it once this week.

I’m also sorely tempted by this Oui Tee — did I tell you that Paul and I are planning a trip to Paris for our 25th wedding anniversary next year?!? #mustresist #graphicteeoverload

Also, the Anthro sale includes premium denim brands like Mother, AG, Paige, Citizens, and more.

Whew! And that’s a wrap.

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend. It’s a gorgeous one here.

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Fall/Winter Fashion

Fall Trends to Try: Snake Print Blouse Now & Later

Happy Friday, friends!!! Cyndi and I are continuing our weekly collab, styling fall trends for now and later, and today it’s all about snake print!

If snake print gives you the creeps, just imagine this look with a leopard tank or even a moody floral — both patterns are also trending right now and can easily be subbed for snake.

My snake print blouse is from Lord + Taylor, and it qualifies for their Buy More, Save More sale.

It’s a nice work wear piece because of the wide shoulder straps and modest v-neck, but I put together more of a date night look because that better fits my lifestyle.

Paul and I love to go out to eat, and now that the kids are older and we don’t need a babysitter, we go out a lot. Working from home, it’s easy to get sloppy during the day, so I like to level it up a bit when we go out.

I styled this blouse for now with black jeans and peep-toe block heel sandals. (I’m wearing a small in the blouse, for size reference.)

These shoes also qualify for the L+T Buy More, Save More Sale, and they’re 30% off at Macy’s and Nordstrom.

STYLE TIP: When you wear black pants and black shoes together, it visually extends the line of the leg, making you appear thinner and taller. #yesplease

I’ve been wearing these sandals a lot lately because they’re so comfortable and easy to walk in. They’re TTS; I have the 8.

As for my black jeans, I’m wearing the AG legging ankle jeans that I’ve had for years. There are a few other sizes at L+T (and they’re on sale) but I fear they’re being discontinued.

I also recommend these Joe’s Jeans (on sale at L+T) or these budget-friendly LOFT jeans (40% off) for black skinnies with a similar silhouette.

I accessorized with hoop earrings and two Victoria Emerson bracelets — the crystal ice on black leather wrap with the Nerja mini boho bracelet, but I think this blouse could use a necklace. I’d wear this or even this (with different earrings, probably.)

To style this look for later, I added a moto jacket and swapped out the sandals for booties. Simple!

This jacket is Level99, but unfortunately I can’t find it online anywhere. I like the soft microsuede fabric, and the color is perfect with the taupe tones in the snake print top. This BlankNYC jacket in the Fawn would look great as well.

My satchel is old, but I still carry it from time to time. I love the silhouette; it reminds me of the Givenchy Antigona.

I don’t always match metals, but I like how the hardware on my bag works with the silver in my jacket as well as my jewelry.

My sock booties are Club Monaco, but they don’t seem to have a similar version this year. I’ll link up a few other options below.

The key with sock booties is to get them so they fit really snug to the ankle, so you can wear your skinny jeans over top. I like how it creates a nice, long, lean leg line.

This is an outfit I’ll wear out to dinner with my husband or girlfriends, or to a blogging conference or event when the weather cools down a bit more.

Outfit Details:

snake print blouse // black skinnies // sandals // similar crossbody (25% off with code GET25) // similar moto jacket // similar sock booties (more options below) // leather satchel // earrings // wrap bracelet & boho bracelet (BOGO free)

If you don’t care for the snake print blouse, how about snake print booties? Snake print in a shoe is more classic and timeless than snake print in a blouse or dress . . . so that’s another option.

I know, I know, some of you are going to say you hate snake print no matter what, but you might want to look away because I’m obsessed with snake print shoes at the moment.

This outfit isn’t really now or later… it’s either/or depending on your climate. I actually wore this outfit with different jeans on Wednesday because we’re having some beautiful weather right now.

I love the details on this snap cuff tee. It’s also incredibly soft and lightweight, so perfect for transition season.

When I first tried it on, I didn’t think I was going to like the fit because it was so voluminous, but I did a big ole front tuck, and suddenly it took on a whole new silhouette.

It has an amazing drape, and I just love the exposed seams and the snap cuffs. I’m wearing a small.

I accessorized with a layered necklace, and I carried a grey crossbody that I think coordinates really nicely with these booties.

My bag is old, but this one is the same style, just a different color combo. It’s also 25% off right now with code GET25.

As for the booties, you’ve seen them before, and it’s a shame they sold out because they are soooo good. Not only are they beautiful and coordinate with so many outfits, but they’re super soft and comfortable inside. I wore them all day yesterday and my feet were so happy.

Of course, snake print booties are everywhere right now, so I’ll link up some other options for you.

You may notice that I did not match the hardware on my bag to my jewelry in this case. I liked the bag and the booties together, so I just went with the mixed metals. No big deal!

Outfit Details:

snap cuff tee (more colors) // AG Prima skinnies // more snake print booties // necklace // similar crossbody (25% off with code GET25) // sunnies c/o Maui Jim

Shop More Snake Print Booties:

So there! That should give you plenty of options. And if you don’t like snake print, we will be back next Friday to style flares for now and later.

Be sure to visit Cyndi and see how she’s styling snake print for now and later!

For the Pinners…

Fall Trends to Try: How to style a snake print blouse for now and later. #fallfashion #snakeprint #pythonprint #falloutfit

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

Revisiting Kick Flares for Fall

There were so many good comments on the post about the kick flares for fall that I decided to write a follow-up, rather than try to reply to everyone.

For anyone just tuning in, here’s the outfit in question:

I happened to be shooting with my photographer, Alison, the day that post went live, and she was shocked to hear that most of you didn’t care for the outfit. She loved it and thought it really worked. (She also loved the gritty backdrop, for what it’s worth. 😉 That was on purpose.)

Her take on it was, this is supposed to be a relaxed, casual, almost sloppy look. Think casual-cool and laid-back (a messy bun would have probably helped…)

Now, keep in mind, she’s at least 10 years younger than I am, and definitely has a casual-cool personal style, but she thinks people just need time for their eye to adjust to a new silhouette.

I think she’s right to a point, but I also don’t think this outfit works for me — for the reasons many of you stated in the comments. The casual-cool, almost sloppy vibe doesn’t really jibe with my style aesthetic, and then there’s the bulky sweater with horizontal stripes that doesn’t do much for my short-waisted, larger busted figure.

So yeah, that’s why I felt like the outfit worked in theory, but it didn’t translate the way I wanted it to when I put it on.

The comments on the post were interesting, and I thought so many of you made valid points. A few of you actually liked the look, some of you hate kick flares altogether and think I should burn them (ha!), but most thought the pieces were all fine on their own — just not together.

Yes, these jeans are very casual due to the wash, the extra wide flare, and the raw hem; but I’m not ready to throw the baby out with the bathwater just yet, so I decided to try a few more top and shoe combos with them.

I also tried some outfits with two other pairs of crop flares, but before I share the new outfits I put together, I will address a question I’ve had a few times, and one I’m sure many of you are thinking:

Why try so hard? Maybe this trend is just not worth it.

I hear you, and I get it, but who remembers when skinny jeans were new? And the uproar . . . Oh, yes. There was an uproar, my friends!

People fought tooth and nail to hold onto their bootcuts, and many of us struggled with the new silhouette before we finally embraced it. I know I did!

(I am speaking in general terms here. Yes, I know not everyone embraced the skinny jean, but it definitely became the style du jour, and it has had a long reign in this ever-changing world of fast fashion.)

We transitioned slowly, first wearing straight leg jeans, then cigarette leg jeans, and finally legging jeans.

But the tops in our closets didn’t work with the new skinny jean trend, and neither did our shoes. We had to start thinking differently about how we put outfits together… What tops go with this new silhouette? Which length of jean works best with my shoes? And, ohmyword… what about ankle boots???

My blog post about how to wear ankle boots is was originally written back in 2015 or 16 (I’m not sure when because I update and republish it almost every year), and it was and still is the most highly trafficked post on my blog every fall and winter.

It was born because I was trying my darnedest to figure out how to pair skinny jeans and ankle boots. Oh, the angst . . . I remember it well!

Now that styling skinny jeans finally seems like second nature, they want me to start wearing straight leg jeans and flares!

And suddenly my tops don’t quite work, and I’m trying to figure out the shoe situation, and here we are again.

But that’s fashion, folks. And this is a fashion blog. So, to keep it relevant, I make it my job to figure out how to wear the current styles, and I don’t think this silhouette is going anywhere.

Granted, we should wear what looks best on us, but I don’t think ignoring trends is the way to do that. Oftentimes what seems trendy one day will seem mainstream in a few months.

Of course some trends come and go, but pant silhouettes have a way of evolving, and I predict that we will get used to this silhouette. Let’s revisit this post next fall, shall we? We may see it very differently.

So yes, I’m still experimenting with kick flares because I’m curious to see if I can make them work for me, and I’m bringing you along for the ride.

That doesn’t mean I will keep this exact pair of jeans, but the style in general is one I’m not giving up on just yet.

And now, with that lengthy preamble out of the way, I present to you . . .

Kick Flares: Take Two

I’m going to start with restyling the BlankNYC Varick kick flares. Yes, the wash and the cut hems make these very casual and almost sloppy, but that’s actually what drew me to them. I like that look to a point, but the casual/sloppy vibe isn’t the easiest look to pull off as we get older, so it really has to work with your personal style aesthetic or it can look try-hard.

With the chunky sweater and mules in Tuesday’s post, that outfit ventured into try-hard territory. As I said in that post, I couldn’t imagine actually wearing that outfit anywhere. That’s usually my gut-check signal that a look isn’t for me.

That said, I do work at home and dress pretty casually most of the time, and I love my ripped jeans, so I think I can wear these jeans if I keep them uber casual.

In that vein, many of you suggested wearing them with a graphic tee and sneakers. Take a look.

Much better, right? I can actually imagine wearing this outfit somewhere.

I tried a few more variations with these jeans before moving on to a different pair . . .

While the white sneakers play nicely with the lettering on the tee, they still contrast with the dark outfit and draw a lot of attention to my feet, so I tried a darker shoe.

I like this look, but I think a more casual dark sneaker would be better. Unfortunately I don’t happen to have one at the moment to show you. #holeinmycloset

So I went the other direction and tried a plain black tee with these leopard slip-on sneakers because it’s a bit more polished and makes more sense with the shoes, and I think this works.

I’d wear this to run errands or to meet up with a friend for coffee.

Then I tried these snake print mules. They have a bit of a wedge, which some suggested might help with the kick flares, and they’re okay . . . but I like the sneakers better, I think.

Then I thought perhaps a grey tee would work better with the white sneakers, so I tried that. I like this but I think the lower vamp on the snake print sneakers is more flattering because it shows more skin. Did anyone else notice that?

So yeah, all in all, I like the graphic tee and sneaker combos. Are they polished and sophisticated?

No, but that’s not the point.

This is just a fun, playful look that can be appropriate for certain casual situations . . . hanging out with friends on the weekends, working at home during the day, running errands, a fair or music festival on the weekend, a ball game, or a kid’s band performance in the football stadium. (I’m a #bandmom, can’t you tell?)

So What About Booties?

A lot of people said they prefer kick flares with booties. The issue with booties is, you need to find the right silhouette and right shaft height to work with the jeans. You don’t want too much skin showing, but you don’t want the jeans getting caught on the shaft of the boot either.

I think these Sofft booties are about the right style/height, but I don’t love them with the graphic tee. I think they need a sweater on top.

So I tried a different top — one that’s still casual, but long sleeved for cooler weather.

This thermal is more fitted than the striped Madewell sweater and has a more fitted silhouette, but it doesn’t quite work with the jeans because they both flare out.

A better option is a top or sweater with a more traditional silhouette, and if it’s too long, you can front tuck it . . . like in the case of this camo sweater.

I wish I’d tried this with the grey booties, because I actually think it would work, but I only have a picture of this combo with sock booties.

Sock booties are always my answer to the question: “But what do I wear with cropped jeans in the wintertime?”

I think this look has potential, but these jeans are probably too casual for these booties. The grey ones would probably look better style-wise and color-wise, and I also think the jeans should be an inch longer to work with these sock booties.

AG Jodi Try-Ons

So let’s try some other kick flares and see if they work any better.

I picked up these AG Jodi crop flares when I saw them on sale at Bloomies because AG never steers me wrong . . . or so I thought.

First of all, they run suuuuper small, despite what the website indicates. I am wearing the 29 and I could barely button them. I definitely need a 30, and I often wear 28 in AG, so I don’t know what gives there.

I’m also not loving the contrast in the wash — the distressing is too severe for the dark wash, in my opinion; but I tried them since I had them.

To compare, the AG Jodi has a 9.25″ rise, 26″ inseam, and 16″ leg opening. The BlankNYC Varick (styled above) has 8″ rise, 25″ inseam, and 16″ leg opening.

First up, I tried the AG Jodi crop flares with a grey tee and white sneaks. It’s fine, but I like the Varick better, mainly because I like the wash better.

Next, I swapped out the sneakers for the snake print mules to elevate the look a bit, but I’m meh on this one.

Let’s try the sock booties and a sweater. I like this silhouette better, but the distressing on the jeans is still distracting to me.

That said, note how the extra inch in the inseam looks so much better with these booties!

And one more option… a less chunky sweater with a slightly shorter length. This actually works really well, except for that awful wash on the jeans. If they were more uniform with the darker wash, I think I’d like this outfit.

Mother Insider Try-Ons

Okay, last pair! I decided to try the whole round of outfits again with these Mother Insiders. These have a 9.75″ rise, 26″ inseam, and 15.5″ leg opening, but they seem slimmer than the two above.

These also have a lighter wash, so I think they look best paired with lighter shoes and tops. They’d definitely work with the grey tee but I tried them with this navy one for variety’s sake.

I think this is a pleasing blend of styles, fit, and colors; and I like how the jeans don’t seem as wide at the bottom as the BlankNYC pair. They don’t feel like they will be as much “work” to style . . . but let’s see. One outfit does not a new pair of jeans justify! 😂

It was also suggested that I throw a cardigan on top, and I like this okay, but I think it makes me look bigger on top — and that along with the width on the bottom isn’t as flattering as the tee worn alone.

Next, I kept the sneakers and tried a sweater. Last winter I got into the cashmere sweater with jeans and sneakers look. I like the juxtaposition of luxe and casual.

I dunno… what do you think? I think I’d like this better with my navy hooded sweater, but I didn’t think to try it. I’m not loving the rust with the white sneakers.

Next, I swapped out the sneakers for the snake print mules to elevate the look a bit. Since they’re a lighter print, they don’t contrast too much against the light denim, extending the line of the leg. Plus the small heel helps too, but I still can’t say I love this look.

For comparison’s sake, I asked myself which of my go-to jeans would I probably reach for if I were going to wear this sweater and mules together right now . . . and I grabbed the Rag & Bone Cate — dark wash skinnies with a raw hem.

So much better, right??? Maybe it’s partly the darker wash, but I think the extra length of the jeans, and the slimmer silhouette clearly creates a more pleasing balance.

And to take it one step further, I swapped out the mules (which I have not yet committed to keeping) for my beloved snake print booties that I’ve worn several times already, including last night and this morning.

Now we have an outfit I want to go put on right now and wear somewhere. But… I’m persistent.

Thinking a lighter color sweater might work better with the Mother jeans and snake mules, I tried on this ivory link stitch sweater from Everlane.

It’s okay, but I decided I just don’t love these mules with these jeans. Everyone keeps saying booties is the way to go with cropped flares, and they’re more practical as it gets colder, so I tried the Lucky Brand suede wedge booties in sesame.

Tell me what you think. The colors definitely work, and you can see just about an inch of skin between the booties and the jeans, which supposedly works, but I don’t love it.

I told you I’m persistent… Next I tried grey booties with a higher shaft. These aren’t as snug to the ankle as a sock bootie, but they have a streamlined silhouette and a higher shaft so there is no skin showing between the jeans and booties. I could even wear socks with these for warmth.

What say you? I think this is the best one yet… except for the navy tee and white sneakers above. I like that outfit too.

Since I like the boot and jeans combo, I tried another top — this J.Crew rollneck cotton sweater. It’s too long with cropped jeans, though; now I’m cut in half.

But that is the problem with new denim silhouettes. Suddenly tops you thought were effortless to style don’t quite work, and this is why we’re seeing so many shorter tops right now.

See how much better the AG Prima look with this sweater and booties?

I did try one more thing — cuffing the AG Primas and front-tucking the sweater.

I’m not really a fan of front tucking sweaters, but it seems to be what everyone is doing, especially with the longer ones. And I noticed they had this sweater front-tucked on the website.

So yeah, it’s a work in progress! I’m not sold on kick flares just yet, but I like a few of these looks, so maybe I’ll venture out wearing a pair one of these days.

Meanwhile I’m going to keep trying different styles and watching how other influencers wear them, and when I’m in areas that are a little more fashion-forward than my area of the ‘burbs, I’ll be looking around to see which silhouettes are taking hold in the mainstream.

I will keep you posted, and feel free to let me know if you have suggestions on improving any of these outfits. I’m open!

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