Styling Crop Straight Jeans for Winter

I’m watching the trends evolve, and I’m here to tell you, the straight denim trend is finally hitting mainstream. What’s more, it’s here to stay for a while.

Of course, we should all wear what looks best on us, and I’m not kicking my skinnies to the curb, but I’m going to try to integrating this style into my outfits more as we head into spring.

I’ve been analyzing others who are wearing this style, and there are a few factors to help make crop straight jeans work for you.

#1. Proper Length is Key

Everyone is different, but at 5’5″, I personally need a 25″ or 26″ inseam. Any longer, and it looks like I’m wearing floods. My ankle-length skinnies are typically 27 or 28″, for reference.

It’s hard to find a 25″ inseam, but 26″ is pretty popular.

The Agolde mid rise straight jeans I’m wearing in this post have a 26″ inseam. They’re almost ankle-length on me, but I think they work. I just have to work a little harder to make sure my shoes work with them and not against them.

Also notice that my jeans are not super wide. Some girls can get away with that, but I like a slimmer fit. These have an 12″ leg opening, so not a whole lot wider than my skinnies, which usually are 10″.

Incidentally, these jeans are amazing! They are thick and super soft and hug the body in all the right places. Best of all, they have great shape retention and don’t bag out as you wear them. They’re TTS, or size up if in between; I have the 29.

#2. Choose the Right Shoe

As far as shoes are concerned, I like sock booties with crop jeans in the winter because you can wear heavy socks, and no skin is exposed.

Sock booties have a high shaft and fit very close to the foot, so they keep the ankle area slender, which helps offset the extra width of the straight-cut jeans.

A pointed toe also helps keep you looking long and lean as well.

Style Tip: Your jeans should extend over the sock booties by at least an inch, so when you sit, you still get good coverage.

I recently purchased these Jeffrey Campbell Siren booties, and I love them. They have a padded footbed, and the neoprene material is super soft against the rest of the foot as well, and the shaft is soft and flexible too so they don’t rub you raw if you aren’t wearing tall socks.

These have a 3.5″ heel, but I find them very comfortable. Here’s a lower heel option, and a budget option.

You can also wear a more traditional bootie with a mid-height shaft, and in this case, they look best when the jeans just barely meet the top of the boot, but don’t “buckle”. That means, you may need an even shorter inseam, or you’ll need to cuff.

I recently ordered these Goodthreads crop straight jeans from Amazon, and they have a shorter inseam than the Agolde, even though it says 26″ online.

They work pretty well with my Marc Fisher Chelsea boots, whereas the Agolde are a little too long for them.

This is the Agolde…see how the jeans get caught on the back of the boot? (They do this on the front too.)

And here’s the Goodthreads jeans with the same boots…they just barely meet the top of the boot. This is a much better combination.

Another shoe that I like with straight crop jeans is a loafer mule.

These work because they expose a few inches of skin at the ankle, which is also slimming, and they usually have more of a pointed toe, which helps elongate the line of the leg.

Of course, if it is super cold where you are, you may have to wait a few months to wear this look, but I wanted to show a non-boot option.

Regular loafers work too, but I find the mule more feminine somehow, and a little more fashion-forward. I know some of you don’t like them, but if you do, they’re a great option, especially as we head into spring.

You can do a sneaker for a more casual look, just make sure the jeans are short enough to expose a few inches of skin in the ankle area. I like the length of the Goodthreads with sneakers.

#3. Your Top Matters

Your top is the other crucial piece to the puzzle when wearing crop jeans. Most people talk about what shoes to wear with crop jeans, but I rarely see them address the top!

I think this has been the most frustrating part of the crop jeans trend for me. I can’t just throw on any sweater in my closet with them and have it look right. Here’s why:

You are shortening the line of the leg by wearing shorter pants, so to keep a proper balance (1/3 to 2/3 is ideal) you have to also shorten your top.

This means tucked in, or at least a front-tuck.

The sweater I’m wearing here is already on the shorter side, and it fits fairly close to the body, but I still gave it a front-tuck. It helps that it is a thinner knit as well. (Unfortunately, it’s old and no longer linkable, but this is why sweater styles are getting shorter.)

If you’re busty, like me, tucking isn’t always the best look, so it takes a lot of trial and error to find the right combination of tops, jeans, and footwear to make it work.

Funny thing, though. When skinny jeans started to get popular, I felt the same way about them. It will get easier the more we play around with this silhouette.

I completed the look by adding my black leather jacket.

This is also an older piece, and therefore unlink-able, but I really like the front center zip as opposed to the asymmetrical zip and large lapels that is common with so many moto style jackets.

Not that I never wear that style, but it’s hard to find ones that don’t make me look top-heavy. This one is a good option (same brand as mine, butter soft leather!) And I like the looks of this one and this one as well.

Finally, I added a belt and a red bag to complete the look.

I really love this outfit, what do you think?

Styling Straight Crop Jeans

I played around with both the Agolde and Goodthreads cropped straight jeans one afternoon this week, and here are some more outfits I came up with…

Here’s one that does NOT work. The shoes are great, but the sweater is too long, and it’s awkward front-tucked with the split hem.

This sweater is a thinner knit, and it’s a little on the cropped side, and I feel like it works. Unfortunately, it’s sold out.

I like it even better with a front-tuck, but it could use a belt.

This one works okay too, with the Siren booties and Naadam scoop sweater. (This sweater finally went on sale! I’m wearing a small.)

This is another sold-out sweater, but because it’s cropped, it works really well with the same jeans and boots.

And this is cute too, with the loafer mules and my Everlane varsity cardigan.

See how the shorter sweaters in the thinner knits keep the overall look balanced?

Here’s me trying the look we photographed above… sometimes I think it’s nice to see the mirror selfie as well.

And then I tried a silky tank top with a leather jacket on top. I like this for date night!

Taking it more casual, this hooded sweater is cropped and boxy, which works with the jeans, and I added my white Vejas.

This look would be better if the jeans were an inch shorter, so I tried a cuff, and I also gave the sweater a front-tuck.

Here’s another casual look, with different sneakers and a sweatshirt that’s on the thinner side.


And un-cuffed…

And then I have a couple with the Goodthreads jeans.

I ordered two colors — the darker pair is the 28, and the lighter pair is the 29. The 29 is more comfortable, but the 28 fits, and if they bag out any, it might be the better choice. I still need to wear them around the house and see how they do.

This sweater (more sizes here) is on the chunkier side, but I happened to have it on already, so I tried it first with the darker wash jeans and loafer mules. I like it!

And here are a few more shots of the striped hoodie with the light wash Goodthreads jeans.

As an aside, this hoodie is AMAZING, you guys. Super soft inside and out, a nice substantial fabric — not super thick, but not thin either — and the fit is cute too. Very good quality for Amazon, and I’m definitely keeping it!

I love this look for casual weekend outdoor events in the springtime.

I realize I’m breaking my own rule here with a longer top, but because everything is light — the light grey/white top, light jeans, light shoes (and my winter-white skin, haha!) there is nothing to break up the look, and I think it works fine.

Shop the Post:

For the Pinners:

Showing you how to style straight crop jeans for winter with boots, mules, and sneakers. Lots of outfit ideas!

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photos: Alison Cornell


Arm Party with Victoria Emerson

We’ve spent a lot of time discussing wardrobe basics lately, and they certainly have their place. But to keep my looks current, I like to mix in some on-trend accessories from time to time, and layering bracelets is a huge fashion trend right now.

One of my favorite places to shop for fashion bracelets is Victoria Emerson. Each piece is 100% handmade with quality materials, at prices won’t break the bank.

The best time to shop Victoria Emerson bracelets is when they’re on sale, and right now she’s running a BOGO Friends & Family Sale!

While I tend to be a bit of a plain Jane, layering your bracelets is very trendy at the moment, and it’s a great way to add some pizzazz to a simple outfit like this one.

This Canterbury boho cuff with large white turquoise beads and a sparkling sequin strap is a great statement piece you can wear alone or layered, as I did here with the Lock Charm Double Wrap.

Some days, though, I like to keep it simple, and Victoria Emerson has some great bracelets for my understated tastes as well.

I wore this three wrap leather bracelet with a camel sweater, and it’s just enough to add interest without becoming the focal point of the outfit.

I love the emerald cut champagne crystals and natural earth tone stone for casual everyday outfits.

Victoria Emerson bracelets make great gifts for a mother, daughter, or girlfriend, and they all come with a branded muslin bag for storage and for easy gift giving!

This is another boho cuff I’ve worn recently… unfortunately it sold out, but there are so many more to choose from.

Which one is your favorite?

Shop the Post:

Canterbury boho cuff // grey lock charm double wrap // similar grey sweater // blue jeans // belt // similar mules // three wrap leather bracelet // camel sweater // camel cardigan

More Victoria Emerson Favorites:

Freshwater Pearls on Natural with Double Wrap on Tan Leather

Silver Dorado on Ivory Wrap

Double Wrap on Safari Textured Leather

Alicante Boho Cuff

Did you like this post? 

Subscribe to get email updates! In addition to my most recent blog posts, you’ll receive exclusive newsletter content like special sales, my newest favorite finds, and an occasional peek behind the scenes — all delivered right to your inbox. PLUS you’ll be automatically entered for a chance to win a $100 gift card each month!

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!

photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion


Happy hump day, friends! I share my daily outfits every other week on Wednesday, and today’s the day.

Our weather has gone from the 20s to the 60s and back to the 30s in the past week, so my outfits are all over the map. I also have a couple of “outfit evolutions” in this one, which I think you’ll like.

As a reminder, I’m around 5’5″ and 140-ish. I’m wearing a size 29 in jeans and a small in tops, unless I state otherwise.

Okay, let’s get started!


I always have a hard time at the beginning of these posts, remembering where I wore the outfits pictured. I usually have to look back at my calendar. #agingisfun

I’m assuming this first look was for working from home and running errands… actually, from looking at my calendar, I see that I took my daughter to the DMV that day and went to a church meeting that night. So there ya go!

These are just some comfy “old favorites” — I just purchased them last fall, but you’ve seen it all before.

When pairing a blue top with blue jeans, I try to make sure there is some contrast, so I went with my darker AG Farrahs. A true dark wash would look good with this too, but then I would probably pick a darker shoe as well.

Even though these booties have a lower shaft, I still needed to cuff my jeans so they don’t fall into the bootie and look messy. The lighter cuff doesn’t break up the leg line too much because the shoes are light as well, and they have a low shaft.


And again the next day, working at home and chauffeuring one of the girls to an appointment.

This Nordstrom Signature sweater was a Christmas gift, and it JUST went on sale! It is sooo luxe and gorgeous.

My jeans are off-black, but they recently sold out. Clearly, I’m liking the monochromatic outfits right now!

These jeans have a 29″ inseam, so they’re on the longer side for me. I often pair them with mules because booties interfere with the hems, but the mules allow some skin to show (which is typically more slimming) and make the tattered hems more visible.


This sweater is one of the few that I own that really needs a front tuck. I did a side-by-side comparison so you can see what I mean…

It’s a little too long and boxy without, but the tuck helps define my waist, and also brings the length of the sweater up a few inches, creating that pleasing 1/3 to 2/3 ratio.

The graphic below is a little sloppy, but it shows what I mean by 1/3 to 2/3 ratio.

Obviously, the front tuck doesn’t bring it up quite to the 1/3 mark, but it’s closer. The untucked version pretty much cuts me in half.

Okay, moving on!

Another day, another grey sweater… and this Naadam ribbed scoop sweater is also on sale! I’ve shared it before, but if you missed it, it is one of the most luxurious sweaters I’ve ever owned. I can’t believe how soft it is. It also comes in burnt orange and black, but the black is not on sale. Still, it is well worth paying full price for. The quality is comparable to much more expensive sweaters.

It’s definitely form-fitting, so you may want to size up for a more relaxed fit, but I decided to keep the small.

I threw this on to go out with my husband on a Saturday night, and we even got a “real” picture outside too!

The sweater is form fitting with a deep V, so I consider that date-night worthy, even though the rest of the outfit is very casual.

It was rainy, so I wore my Aquatalia boots. This picture shows them better…


I wore this next look to church on a Sunday. I had nursery duty, so I went a little more casual than usual. (There are no babies, just toddlers, so I wasn’t worried about wearing a nice sweater.)

And would you believe it? This leopard sweater just went back on sale! It keeps going on and off sale, but it’s currently 40% off at Nordstrom (available in S, M, and L) and even less at Bloomingdale’s (available in XS and L) after you add it to cart. (I have the small.)

Again, I chose to pair these jeans with mules.


The next day, I wore this outfit to run some kitchen-related errands. Unfortunately, the sweater sold out.


And this was another day of running kitchen-related errands… I haven’t been at home much lately!

I chose light-wash jeans to pair with this oatmeal-colored sweater, and then I wore taupe booties to keep it all light neutrals.


Okay, now I have an outfit evolution for you…

It was a cold day, and I wanted to wear my favorite grey sweater. (It’s from last year, sorry!)

I tried it first with my Sorel wedges, but they require me to cuff my jeans. With the longer sweater, and the light cuff breaking up the line of the leg, I felt like my legs looked a little short and stumpy. Plus, the grey on top and bottom seemed kind of plain Jane, even for me!

So, I switched to these hiker boots and added a vest.

I like how the black in the vest ties in the black boots, and because the boots are dark and the jeans are dark, it creates one long, lean leg line rather than getting chopped up by the light cuff (above.) For some reason, the white shearling doesn’t seem to be a problem.

But then I decided it was too cold for wearing a vest with no coat on top, so I changed to my red puffer jacket.

I added a scarf, and that was the final look.


And here’s the 2nd outfit evolution…

The next day was Bible Study, and I was trying to get out of my grey sweater rut. I also thought it might be fun to wear white jeans. I style them for the blog in the winter, but I rarely actually wear them.

It was another cold day, so I decided to wear my casual grey OTK boots with white jeans, but I needed to figure out a top.

I started with my teal supersoft mockneck (wearing a medium.)

Hmmm, maybe a front tuck…

Funny, as I look at these pictures, I rather like this outfit, but at the time, I felt like there was too much contrast with the teal on top, white in the middle, and grey on bottom.

I will say this, though. It’s very well balanced. Each part is about 1/3 of my body, especially with the tuck.

Next I tried this navy fair isle sweater turtleneck.

I thought since there is white in the sweater, it would pull it all together. I think I’d actually like this with lighter grey boots — maybe even my taupe Jeffery Campbell booties.

But it was pretty cold for bare feet in booties, so I decided to try something else.

I tried the light pink Nordstrom Signature sweater from Monday’s Try-On Haul, thinking a lower contrast between the sweater and jeans might look better.

But now, my attention goes right to the boots…

This is also when I realized this sweater wasn’t a keeper. Even with a front-tuck, it’s too wide, and I just don’t care for the fit.

So then I tried this bright pink turtleneck.

This sweater is a really good deal, by the way. Bloomingdale’s now has it 60% off, and I really like the rib-knit trim, exposed back seam, and extended cuffs — all fun details that make it a little more special than a basic turtleneck. I recommend sizing up in this; I have the medium.

This creates a more flattering silhouette, but I was beginning to realize that the boots and white jeans combo was the problem, not the tops I’d been trying.

The stark contrast between the white jeans and dark grey boots draws all my attention, and the casual styling of the boots isn’t quite right with the crisp, classic white denim.

A lighter grey boot, or even a bootie, would look better, but it was too cold for that, so…

I switched to the black hiker boots, and then I added a black vest for another point of interest and to tie in the black boots.

But I wasn’t feeling confident in this outfit either. I think the white jeans are too dressy for the hiker boots and vest? I dunno… but sometimes it’s best to go with your gut and not over-analyze…

Bwahaha! I do realize the irony of that statement. All I’ve done so far is over-analyze this outfit, but when it got to this point, I just realized it wasn’t going to work out, and I decided to ditch the white jeans entirely.

By then I was running late, so I switched to my faithful blue AG Farrahs, added a long necklace, and ran out the door!

I tried it both front-tucked and untucked, and ended up going untucked. I think it works either way, because the vest is slightly longer than the sweater.


In retrospect, I think the white jeans looked too dressy for everything I was trying to pair them with — a different shoe might have helped the first two looks, but by the end, with the hiker boots and a vest, I needed a more casual jean.

Okay, that was a long one!

The next look was last Friday, and you guessed it… more kitchen errands! It was a mild day, so I went with ballet flats, and I didn’t even need a coat.

I read somewhere to do the front-tuck off-center so it looks more carefree… I like it!


And that brings us to last Saturday! I took the girls to the mall. It was another mild day, so I took the opportunity to wear this sweater. (It’s not as warm as some.) I love it, but it definitely needs a higher rise jean. Also, I went with a medium in this one.

Incidentally, the price on these Rag & Bone booties is INSANE. I guess they are going out of style? I don’t care, I love them. The quality is outstanding, and I like the dip in the front.


That night, Paul and I had a New Year’s Party to attend, and I wore the 360Cashmere turtleneck from Monday’s Try-On Haul. This is the one that sold out at Nordstrom Rack, so sorry! I did get mine at that amazing price, so yay for that!

I also wore my new Banana Republic Devon skinny pants… that’s right! No jeans!

I was going for country-club casual with this look, is that a thing? I didn’t feel like jeans were appropriate, although I could have probably gotten away with black jeans and the rest of this outfit, but I wanted to look a little more refined. These pants were perfect!

I also like how they pair with these Marc Fisher pumps. My feet aren’t handling higher heels very well these days, so I picked up this pair recently. The chunky 3″ heel is walkable, but the pointy toe elongates the leg and keeps them on the dressier end of the spectrum.

Then I went with a cozy sweater on top to keep the look from being too or fussy.

Sorry, the lighting in my room was horrible. I waited too late to take pictures.


This next look is from Sunday. We went to church and then out to lunch, and I finally got to wear my white jeans!

See, now this works because the white jeans have a dressier vibe, so pairing them with a classic v-neck sweater and pumps makes sense.

We tried to get some pictures outside, but it was pretty windy.

I love the combination of light neutrals in this look, and the snake print pumps are so fun. (They’re also at Bloomingdale’s.)

These pumps are the Sam Edelman Hazel that I’ve been wearing comfortably for years, but I was struggling a bit after wearing them for a few hours on Sunday. I guess it’s just old age and joints that aren’t as flexible anymore? I don’t know, but it’s a bummer. I’m going to have to start keeping my heels around 3″.


Yesterday, I wore this to get my mammogram, fun! I figured if I have to get a mammogram, I may as well feel cute, so I wore my new Agolde crop straight jeans with that same 360Cashmere sweater and my Aquatalia booties. I really like how it turned out!

I don’t usually wear turtlenecks when my hair is pulled back — I feel like I look like a floating head, haha! But I made an exception this time.


And that’s a wrap! Whew! That was a long one. Maybe I should go to doing these weekly.

I hope you all have a great Wednesday, and if you have any questions, I’m happy to answer in the comments!

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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!



Well, good morning! It’s been a while since I’ve done a Q&A, so I asked for questions on Instagram, and I got a lot more than I expected!

I can’t fit them all in this post, so I chose the ones I felt were better suited to the blog, and I can answer the rest on Stories.

If you like this, I can try to it once a month.

Skincare/Makeup/Beauty Questions

Q // A while ago, you mentioned teeth whitening. How did you find it? Would you recommend?

A // Yes, I did the Zoom whitening at my dentist’s office last spring, but I didn’t love the results.

They tried to do 3 rounds, but I had major pain towards the end of the 2nd round, and I couldn’t do the 3rd. They sent me home with the at-home kit, and I continued to use that — I actually used it up.

I guess my teeth got a little whiter, but they’re pretty much back to “normal” now. For the cost and in-office experience, I expected dramatic results, and I didn’t get that. Next time, I’ll just use Crest Whitestrips. I’ve had better results with those, and they’re a heckuvalot cheaper.

Q // Thoughts on facials, like peels for example? 

A // I think facials are beneficial and every woman should get them regularly from a trusted aesthetician.

For the past few years, I’ve been getting facials a few times a year at the spa where I go for my mani/pedis. I often purchase their package deals, so sometimes I’ll get 3 or 4 in a short period of time. I enjoy them, and they also seem to help my skin’s texture and radiance. I’ve tried different kinds, but nothing harsh. Any “peels” or “acids” are fairly mild.

In the past year, I’ve started seeing a cosmetic dermatologist, where I get monthly glycolic peels. I can definitely tell a difference in the texture and radiance in my skin. They aren’t as relaxing as the ones I get at the spa, but the results are more noticeable. If you go that route, do your research and find someone REALLY good.

Q // Did you find a good product for chapped lips?

A // Yes, I use Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask every night, and my lips have never been in better shape.

Q // Can you recommend a tinted moisturizer?

A // Laura Mercier’s tinted moisturizer is a cult-favorite, and for good reason. It’s one of the best I’ve tried and actually gives you some coverage, while keeping your skin looking natural and dewy-soft. Bonus, it has SPF 30.

Fashion Questions

Q // I’m going to Florida next week from cold Toronto… unsure what to wear on the plane. Help?

A // I would wear jeans with a short-sleeve tee or tank or sleeveless blouse under a cozy cardigan. Wear that to stay warm on the plane, and then when you get to your destination, you can toss your cardigan in your tote.

Put your coat on top of that. If you have someone drop you at the door at the airport, and picking you up when you get back, you can leave your coat in the car. Otherwise, wear to airport and carry it on the plane — or leave room in your luggage and stash it before checking your bags.

For shoes, I usually wear ballet flats or loafers in the airport for easy on and off, or sneakers if you will need them at your destination. I have TSA Precheck, so sneakers aren’t too much of a hassle anymore.

Bring flip flops in your carry-on to swap out once you get to Florida. Roll up your jeans for a cropped look, ditch the cardigan, and you’re ready to go!

You might also like: What I Packed for my Disney Vacation + My Travel Outfit and What I Packed for Florida + My Travel Outfit

Q // What trends are you seeing for spring?

A // I definitely think we’re seeing the crop straight denim trend hit the mainstream. I don’t think skinnies will be “out” entirely, but they’ll be taking backseat to this more current silhouette.

Q // How do we create our own rough hem on jeans?

A // This is a good tutorial: How to DIY a Raw Hem, According to Madewell’s Denim Expert

Q // What do you think are the most common fashion mistakes at the moment?

A // I would say buying clothes that do not fit properly (i.e. too big or too small) and wearing styles that aren’t designed to complement your individual body.

Q // Transitional pieces that work in winter but you want something springtime?

A // Pick up a few lighter/brighter color sweaters, and pair them with white jeans or lighter bottoms.

Q // Which fashion trends do you wish came back “in”? Which do you wish would go away?

A // I’ll start with what I wish would go away — leggings as pants. UGGGHHHHHHHHH…..

Also, oversized tops and sweaters with drop shoulders, and the front tuck, which is a necessity when wearing the former.

I still do it sometimes because it looks modern, and it’s often necessary with current styles, but I think it looks silly and we will eventually look back on it and laugh at ourselves.

As far as fashion trends I wish would come back… traditional styles that fit and flatter a woman’s body. Like full length pants and jeans.

Also, tops with on-shoulder seams that skim the body and are shaped to flatter a womanly figure, and at a length that you can wear untucked and maintain proper balance.

Q // Did you keep those “New Years” heels, and if so, will you use them for a piece?

A // Yes, I did, and I will try! I think they would look best with a dress or skirt.

Q // How do you know if skinny jeans are too big or too tight? And do I need to take shrinkage into account?

A // I would say, the biggest mistake women make with skinny jeans is buying them too big. Mine hardly ever shrink, they’re more likely to stretch out some with wear.

I also recommend wearing them around the house for an hour or so, with tags on, to see how they are going to hold up. Some lower-end brands really bag out.

If in doubt, size down.

Q // Where is a good place to buy clothes for 50-year-old husband? Help!

A // Nordstrom! Their men’s department has a wide variety of styles and brands at various price points, and their sales associates are usually excellent. My husband is a convert.


Q // Closet organization? Help… do you switch clothes out seasonally?

A // Yes, most definitely. I can’t stand to have clothes in my closet that aren’t a viable option at the moment. I move out of season clothes to the basement in labeled plastic bins, probably 3 or 4 times a year.

You might also like: How I Transition My Closet For Fall

As far as organization goes, the best thing I ever did was install a custom closet organization system. I had one in my last house, and it was one of the first things I scheduled when we moved into this house.

Q // How do you fold or hang sweaters without getting creases or bumps in the shoulders?

A // I fold my sweaters like this, and store them on shelves — see above picture of my closet. (I’ve also started stacking like colors together, unlike the picture above.)


Q // More info on IF…. I bought the book after I saw you reading it and would like help.

A // I really recommend reading the entire book, and Gin’s story at the end, before starting. A lot will become clear.

But even with that, I’ve already learned a lot more from listening to just one of her podcasts. Even if you aren’t a “podcast person” — I’m not — it’s worth your time to listen to a few.

Q // Healthy lunch ideas?

A // I’m a big fan of leftover dinner or soup. Or I will have tuna salad or egg salad, and follow it up with berries or other fruit.


Q // How long have you been a Christian?

A // I don’t remember ever not being a believer, but I made a decision to accept Christ and live for the Lord when I was about 7 years old. It’s been a very sloooooow growth process ever since. (Emphasis on slow, lol!)

I’m a work in progress, like we all are, but my faith has always been an important part of my life, and I’m thankful for parents who raised me in a Christian home.

Q // Do you ever get bored with your wardrobe?

A // This one made me laugh. Either this person thinks I should be bored (because I wear grey sweaters and mid-wash skinny jeans every day, lol!) or she doesn’t see how many clothes I cycle through my closet.

No, I do not get bored with my wardrobe. In fact, I wish I could wear my favorites more, but that wouldn’t make for very interesting What I Wore posts every other week… or a very attractive Instagram grid.

Yes, those are the things I think about when getting dressed each day.

Q // What is a normal weekday or even week like for you? (What’s your schedule?)

A // I’ve been wanting to do a whole post on this, but I never seem to get around to it. Here it is in a nutshell:

I always get up between 5 and 6AM. I go right downstairs, make coffee, have my devotion, and start working. I take a break to get my daughter on the bus around 6:45, and then I’m back at work until it’s time to exercise or I need to go somewhere.

I try to run (these days, it’s more of a walk/run) or work out every day, but that doesn’t always happen. (I work out with a trainer 2X a week.)

During the day, I sometimes have doctor or spa/beauty appointments, but I try keep my mornings somewhat open for work, as that’s when I’m most efficient and energetic. If I don’t have an appointment or a photo shoot or a reason to run to the mall, I’m at home working at the computer.

In the afternoons, I sometimes I have to pick my daughter up from band practice, and there are other things that crop up, of course, but otherwise, I pretty much work every weekday from when I wake up until when I go to the kitchen to make dinner. This job never sleeps, and there’s always something I could be doing.

Dinnertime is when I shut it down. I hardly ever come back to my office after dinner. We have dinner as a family, and we usually hang out in the family room and watch TV afterwards. I am in bed by 9PM most nights. I know, I’m a grannie!

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Fall/Winter Fashion

Try-On Haul: Amazon Fashion, Luxury Sweaters, Sock Booties, Work Pants, and AGOLDE Jeans

Good morning, and happy Monday! It was a lot of fun reading through all your comments on yesterday’s post. So much helpful info!

Now that I’m not posting on Saturdays, I’ve moved my Try-On Hauls to Mondays. The only problem is, so many retailers run sales over the weekend, and I like sharing things when they’re on sale… so maybe I need to move this to Fridays?

I dunno… For this week, at least, we’re doing Monday.

Currently I’m shopping for quality winter wardrobe staples that are on sale. As the retailers start to stock the virtual shelves with resort wear and early spring styles, they’re moving out their cashmere and wool, and it’s a good time to find great deals on quality winter wardrobe basics.

I’ve also got spring in mind, so I’m on the lookout for new styles I may want to incorporate into my spring wardrobe.

If I was a “normal” person (considering that I live in Philly, where it will be cold for 2 or 3 more months), I probably wouldn’t be buying for spring in January. But since I’m a fashion blogger and have to start styling spring looks in March, I start to scout out the new spring styles as soon as the holidays are over.

I may as well share what I find, as some of you live in warmer areas and will start wearing these pieces much sooner than I will.

So let’s get started!

Try-Ons: Amazon Fashion

I’m trying to keep a variety of price points in these try-on hauls, and a lot of you seem to like it when I share good Amazon fashion finds. It’s hit or miss, but I sometimes hit the jackpot.

ZESICA Turtleneck Batwing Sleeve Chunky Pullover (size S) // This sweater caught my eye for the texture in the knit and contrasting neck, cuffs, and hem. It’s very soft against the skin — the fabric is 100% acrylic.

It has a loose weave and it’s kind of lightweight — I’d probably need a thin long-sleeve tee underneath to be warm enough, but it’s not see-through to the point of needing an under layer. It also comes in TONS of colors.

This sweater runs true to size; the small fits the way it’s meant to fit. I don’t think it’s necessarily the most flattering cut, but it’s cute for a chunky, oversized look. I think it’s best paired with skinny jeans, because they help offset the bulkiness on top.

VERDICT: This is a good choice for a budget buy. I can’t say how long it will hold up to washing and wearing, but it’s cute and comfortable and looks nice on.

Goodthreads Women’s Mid-Gauge Stretch V-Neck Sweater (size S) // I’ve shared this before in the charcoal, and I ordered it in this burgundy to try another color. I love the shape of the v-neck — very flattering!

I like this sweater a lot, but again, you’re getting what you pay for. It’s thin and stretchy and comfortable, but I’m not sure how it will hold up to washing and wearing.

It runs a bit big; I have the small, and it’s supposed to have a relaxed fit, but I might prefer an XS on me personally.

VERDICT: Another good choice for a budget buy.

Women Classic Two Tone Star Lace up Fashion Sneakers (size 8.5) // These were a pleasant surprise! They’re very soft and cushiony, especially the tongue and around the foot opening. I wouldn’t say they have support in the footbed, but they’re fine for me.

The quality is just okay, but it’s fine for a trendy shoe. I can see wearing these a lot in the springtime.

I recommend sizing up in these. I usually wear an 8 or 8.5 in closed shoes, sometimes a 7.5 or 9. I went with an 8.5 since reviews indicated I should size up, but I really could use the 9.

VERDICT: The price is right for a fun, trendy shoe. They’re quite comfortable!

Try-Ons: Luxury Sweaters

Okay, now we are going to hop to the other end of the spectrum, with a few luxe sweaters I found on sale.

Nordstrom Signature Crewneck Cashmere Blend Sweater (size S) // This sweater is absolutely gorgeous, and it’s 60% off!!! I was drawn to the color, especially as we head into spring. It stays cold here for so long, I find myself gravitating to brighter, lighter colors in soft, cozy knits for much of January and February.

Unfortunately, it’s not the best silhouette for me. The combination of the crew neck, drop shoulder, and boxy fit add visual weight and make me look top-heavy.

VERDICT: Beautiful sweater, great price, but better suited to someone built smaller on top.

About Nordstrom Signature:

Nordstrom Signature is one of Nordstrom’s in-house brands, but it’s more on par with brands like Vince and Theory. As a result, you’re getting a really good bang for your buck — especially when it goes on sale — because you’re not paying for the brand name, but you get a similar quality.

360cashmere Margaret Turtleneck Cashmere Sweater (size S) // I’ve been hearing some chatter about 360Cashmere, and I wanted to try it. I found this sweater at Verishop (a new retailer to me.) It’s on a magnificent sale at the moment — less than I paid, in fact!

I was surprised by how thin this cashmere is, compared to some other sweaters — but it’s not thin in a cheap way. It’s a really gorgeous knit.

The styling on this sweaters is fun –I love the wider sleeves and the knit detail at the cuffs, but it has this swingy, oversized fit that really doesn’t do much for me. It looks cute in these pictures, but as I moved around, I started having second thoughts.

I decided to hold off and see what else I could find. Now that the prices have dropped, I’m glad I sent it back.

As an aside, I’m dying over this sweater, but it’s gone in my size. Boo to the hoo. I may try the medium.

VERDICT: Gorgeous sweater, thinner than I expected, but still great quality. You have to be okay with a swingy, oversized fit. I returned, but having second thoughts after looking at these pix, lol!

About Verishop:

Verishop is a relatively new website dedicated to quality and convenience. They carry a highly curated selection of quality products from verified brands only — no third-party sellers. They carry a lot of luxury brands, premium denim, etc. The best part is their free 1-day shipping and free returns!

360Cashmere Dolores Cashmere Turtleneck Sweater (size XS) // This was my second attempt at a 360Cashmere sweater, and this one is from Nordstrom Rack. Unfortunately, it sold out before it got to me.

I like this one a little better than the first one (and I got it at a much better price.) It has the same fun sleeves with a more traditional fit through the mid-section, and the turtleneck is really soft and fluffy. I actually wore it to a party on Saturday night with different pants.

I had to settle for an XS (the S was sold out.) I think I’d like a S better, but it works — it looks almost cropped, which works well with the straight cropped jeans I am wearing above.

VERDICT: Gorgeous sweater, great price, sorry it sold out!!! I kept it.

Naadam The Softest Cashmere V-Neck Oatmeal (size S) // Okay, this one is full price, but I wanted to try it because I am so in love with my other Naadam sweater, and I love this oatmeal color.

You guys, this sweater is the thickest, softest cashmere I’ve ever touched. The thickness is what is so impressive — so luxe.

The styling is very classic, and the v-neck is just right — flattering but not too deep to compromise modesty. The arms are nice and long, the length is perfect for layering under jackets, and it doesn’t need a front-tuck. Perfection!

The fit is true to size; you could size up for a more relaxed fit, but I went with my usual small.

The price is up there, but compared to the higher end brands — Vince, Theory, Equipment, and the like, this is actually a great price for the quality.

Try-On: Jeffrey Campbell Siren Booties

Jeffrey Campbell Siren Booties (size 8) // I ordered these booties after seeing them on another blog. I’ve seen them a lot this fall/winter, but I was turned off by the neoprene. I’d rather have suede or leather.

BUT. These are sooooo comfortable, and they look really sharp. I purchased them specifically to try with crop straight jeans, and they really are perfect with them.

These boots run TTS, or size down if in between. I went with an 8.

VERDICT: A great choice for a pointy-toe sock bootie to wear with cropped jeans and dresses. Keeping!

Try On: Straight Crop Jeans

Agolde Toni Mid Rise Straight Ankle Jeans

AGOLDE Toni Mid Rise Straight Jeans (size 29) // I’m watching trends evolve, and the crop, straight denim trend is finally hitting mainstream, and it’s here to stay for a while. We’re going to see more and more of them as we head into spring, so I’m trying to find a pair or two that I really like.

I ordered these jeans at the recommendation of another blogger, and I LOVE THEM.

First of all, AGOLDE (a new brand to me) is a sustainable pick, for those who are trying to clean up their fashion game. Also, the price point isn’t quite as high as other premium brands. I paid full price for these, and they’re worth every penny.

The material on these jeans is thick and suuuuper soft, and the wash is absolutely gorgeous. They’re the perfect mid-indigo wash for dressing up or down, there’s no crazy distressing, but they’ve managed to give them the perfect worn-in, well-loved look. They huge my body in all the right places and are comfortable right out of the box. I didn’t want to take them off.

They have a 26″ inseam and a 11″ leg opening, so they have a slimmer fit but read as a straight — so a great way to ease into the crop straight trend. They’re TTS or size down if in between; I’m in the 29, and they fit perfectly.

VERDICT: Love, love, LOVE! If you’re a skinny jean fan and have been struggling to find straight crop jeans you like, I recommend trying these. They’re selling out at Verishop, but if they have your size, the 1-day shipping and free returns is pretty sweet! You can also find them at Nordstrom and Shopbop.

I tried these jeans a bunch of different ways, and I am working on a dedicated post for that… so stay tuned!

Try-On: Black Skinny Pants

Banana Republic Devon Legging-Fit Washable Bi-Stretch Ankle Pants (size 8) // These were recommended by someone in my JLS Fashion Tribe Facebook Group, and they are really good!!! I struggle to find ankle skinny pants that don’t look frumpy, and these do not.

They definitely have a legging-like fit, but if you like that style, you should love these. PERFECT for work wear, and they also come in navy, and are on sale right now!

These pants runs small; the 8 was snug in the waist, but I wore them to an event last weekend and they do loosen up some.

Okay, that’s a wrap! Leave any questions you may have in the comments.

I’m off to a photo shoot this morning… have a marvelous Monday!

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Some of the prices below are not accurate; click through to see the lowest price.

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Coffee Talk: Intermittent Fasting Update & Kitchen Makeover Plans

Well, good morning! I’m going to need toothpicks to keep my eyes open today.

I haven’t been sleeping well while on the prednisone for my hip. (Today is my last day, yay!) Plus, I think my new intermittent fasting regimen may also be partly to blame.

I usually make myself stay in bed until at least 5AM, but last night, I just got up and came downstairs at 3AM and started doing blog work. And stupidly, I even made a cup of coffee. #iknow #sodumb

By 4AM, I was getting drowsy, so I went back up and tried to get another couple hours of sleep before getting up for church. Let’s just say, that didn’t work out so well.

So here I am, back up and at ’em at 5AM!

Speaking of IF (intermittent fasting), I’ve had several requests for an update…

Intermittent Fasting Update

This was my 2nd full week of committing to a 19:5 fasting schedule, and I’m really getting in the groove. I’m not hungry anymore, and I have tons of energy.

I downloaded an app, which makes it soooooo much easier to keep track, and I like how it alerts me when it’s time to break my fast. This way, I don’t even find myself looking at the clock and counting down.

I just wait until it beeps, and then when I get around to it, I go get something healthy to eat and tap the End Fast button.

There are a bunch of different fasting apps,  but the one I’m using is called Zero.

My only complaint is, it doesn’t alert me when my 6-hour eating window is up. Usually I start my next fast well before that anyway, but every once in a while, I lose track of time and end up going over my 6 hours. But that’s not a big deal, and it hasn’t happened very often. It’s not supposed to be a rigid system, anyway.

I actually have the app set to a 18:6 schedule, just to give myself some leeway. (I can always close my eating window early because it measures my fasting window.) Ironically, I found that I started losing weight when I moved from 4 or 5 to a 6-hour eating window.

Now, that may also be because I’m not eating as much overall — again, I blame the prednisone. I don’t have much of an appetite, plus I’m not drinking much wine while on it. So we’ll see how things go once I get off the meds.

I’m a little nervous about potential hair loss with IF, since that is something I struggle with at times, so I went to the health food store yesterday for a hair/skin/nail vitamin and a canister of collagen peptides.

I tried the collagen in my coffee yesterday afternoon, and I didn’t care for the flavor (yes, I could definitely taste it) so I’m open to ideas… I don’t do smoothies because my digestive system can’t process them, and I get an upset stomach, so that’s out. Anything else I can put collagen in?

I’m also going to try to eat more eggs. I used to have them scrambled every morning for breakfast, but I miss them now that I’m not eating breakfast. Plus, they contain important nutrients that my body needs, so I need to start keeping hardboiled eggs and/or egg salad in the fridge for a quick and easy lunch.

IF Results: Week 2

As for my results? The scale is down a bit, but more importantly, I look and feel slimmer. I’m diligently keeping track of my weight in a spreadsheet so I can compare weekly averages, but I don’t want to get too caught up in the number on the scale.

My biggest regret with this whole process is not taking a good before picture. I didn’t even think about it.

So anyway, the short story is, I’m happy with the IF lifestyle so far and see no reason to change anything!

Kitchen Makeover Plans

In other news, our kitchen makeover is coming right along!

After a lot of running around and internet research and talking to people (you all have been a great help!) we finally have a game plan.

In case you’re just tuning in, we are planning to paint the cabinets and island, replace countertops, add a tile backsplash, and install a vent hood over the cooktop. Plus, we plan to redesign the desk area.

Here’s a “before” picture of the kitchen — even before we moved in and painted — but it gives you the idea of that I’m talking about if you haven’t seen it before.


After much debate, we decided to go with all Bosch appliances, with the exception of our cooktop.

I’m all about keeping my appliances simple and intuitive, and I hate touch pad controls with a red hot passion.

When I saw the Bosch double wall oven with actual knobs , I got so excited, I think I frightened the salesman. That was when we decided to go all Bosch. (I also love the design of their cabinet depth French door fridge, and the dishwasher was already a given.)

As for the cooktop, BlueStar appliances are made right here in Reading, Pennsylvania, and they make one of the only two induction cooktops that have actual knobs. (See above comment about touch pad controls.)

Both Paul and I think it’s cool to support a local brand, so even though it’s a bit of a splurge, we’re going to go with that. It will save us having to run a gas line, which was our original plan, and I think I can get used to cooking with induction the way the BlueStar operates.


We also picked out countertops this week. Like I said, we’ve been rocking and rolling on the kitchen plans!

We’re going with a beautiful white and grey quartzite — not to be confused with quartz. (Quartz is manmade; quartzite is a natural stone.) Hopefully it will hold up to the abuse we dish out around here.

Because we are used to a murky brown granite, we think nothing of putting hot pans on the counters, and we’re pretty careless about wiping up colorful substances like wine rings and pizza sauce.

I’ll have to make sure to keep our quartzite sealed regularly and retrain my kids to be a little more careful, but I’m really excited for a light and airy kitchen. I’ve had maple cabinets and brown granite in my kitchen for the past 15 years.


The next task is to find a painter for the cabinets. I have a couple of appointments this week, and I’m crossing my fingers that someone is available in the next couple of months. Now that I’ve got this ball rolling, I want to keep the project moving.

Our plan is to paint the perimeter cabinets an off-white that works well with the quartzite, and then the island will be dark grey or off-black.

What’s nice about the decision to paint the cabinets and not replace them is that we don’t have to wait on the cabinets to get everything else installed. We can go ahead and order appliances, and then whenever the counters are ready, they can go in.

I’m assuming we can even tile our backsplash before the cabinets get painted, but I’ll ask the painters what they prefer.

All that to say, things should start changing in here very soon!


We still need to pick out new hardware for the cabinet doors and drawers, and we want to install some under-cabinet lighting, but our pendant lights over the island were new as of last fall, so they stay.


So, the only remaining task is to figure out the desk area.

We plan to get a carpenter to build a wine rack in that cut-out where the Bon Appetit sign is, and then I want to remove the desk, raise the counters to regular kitchen height, and install a dual zone wine bottle and beverage fridge underneath, as well as a pull-out microwave. (We are going to get a proper vent hood over the cooktop.)

When entertaining, we always make that counter the drink station, so I can’t wait to have a drink fridge and get all the bottles and cans off the counter.

With the leftover space, we’ll put a new, taller set of drawers to house all the office junk. I’ve measured it out, and it will fit. The question is, how to design it so it looks nice. We still have to figure that out.

So that’s the plan!

I probably should have broken this up into two posts, but my whole week is already planned out with a post every day, so I’ll just let this be another suuuuper long Coffee Talk.

We’re off to church this morning, and I think I’m going to get outside and walk/run while the weather is still mild.

I hope you all in the stormy areas are staying safe.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Fall/Winter Fashion

Winter Date Night Outfit: Grey & Black with a Pop of Red

Happy Friday, friends! Cheers to the weekend! Today I’m wrapping up 5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater with another winter date night outfit.

Jo-Lynne Shane styling a winter date night outfit with a leather jacket, suede over the knee boots, black jeans, a grey cashmere sweater, and a red bag... Click through to see how it came together!

Someone asked in Tuesday’s post, What makes an outfit a date night look instead of just an everyday outfit?

That’s a fair question.

What The Heck is Date Night?

Believe it or not, “date night” is actually in the online dictionary. (Yes, I googled it. #wordnerd)

From “an evening social date on which a married or long-term couple go out together” or “a night of the week on which it is usual or customary for couples to go out on a date.”

And the Urban Dictionary actually adds this caveat: “Not to be confused with a Date, as that is between unmarried couples solely.” So there ya go!

Whatever you want to call it, I think it’s important to “date your spouse,” and I like to dress differently when we go out together than I do for work or church or everyday life. It makes our time together seem more special, and I think he appreciates it too.

What Makes a Date Night Outfit?

When I think of a date night outfit, I’m going for a look that’s dressier than what I’d wear to the grocery store or the mall, sexier or edgier than what I’d wear to work or church, but not as formal as a cocktail dress… unless the situation requires that!

Jo-Lynne Shane styling a winter date night outfit with a leather jacket, suede over the knee boots, black jeans, a grey cashmere sweater, and a red bag... Click through to see how it came together!

In this case, the over-the-knee boots plus the leather jacket take the outfit to “date night” territory.

Both are versatile wardrobe pieces that I mix and match with other looks and wear for a wide range of venues, but when I put them together, the outfit takes on an edgier vibe than what I would wear to run to the mall or volunteer at my kid’s school.

On the other hand, it’s not as conservative as what I would wear to church or to the office, making it perfect for date night!

Incidentally, I’d consider this winter date night outfit a great GNO (girls’ night out) look as well!

I kept my jewelry fairly simple, but I did add a red bag with silver chain detail for a little pizazz. The hardware has a more rugged/edgy vibe than most of my other bags, and I like the element of interest it adds to the look.

Unfortunately, this one is from last year, and it sold out, but I’ll link up some other options.

Pop of Red

In fact, almost everything I’m wearing is old. The leather jacket and OTK boots were both purchased on a major sale, and they’re closet staples I wear over and over.

The sweater is the Halogen cashmere crewneck, and the jeans are my black AG Farrahs.

Do you have a regular date night with your spouse, or at least make it a priority?

We go out a lot, but it’s not a regular night or anything. It’s a lot easier now to find time to go out together than it was when my kids were young and needed babysitters, and we often take advantage of the nights when they’re out with friends and make it a spontaneous outing.

But if it’s been a while, sometimes we will plan something because we need that time to talk uninterrupted.

Other times, we go out with friends, which is fun too, but I do think it’s important for the two of us to go out alone every so often, because you can have conversations you can’t have with anyone else around.

At any rate, I hope this winter date night outfit inspires you to level up a bit when you go out with your significant other. I guarantee, he will appreciate it, and you’ll feel great too!

Outfit Details:

grey cashmere crew // similar leather jacket (faux option) // black skinnies (budget option) // OTK boots // red crossbody bags

I hope you liked this series on 5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater!

You can see even more ways I’ve worn a grey sweater here.

And I’m wide open to ideas for other 5 Ways posts. Let me know if you prefer all 5 outfits in one post, or spread out over the week like this one.

Jo-Lynne Shane shares 5 ways to wear a classic grey sweater for women over 40, with other wardrobe basics for a variety of fall/winter outfits you can recreate from your own closet!

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

Grey Sweater with Blue Jeans and Hiker Boots

It’s Day 4 of 5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater, and today I’m styling a super casual look with a puffer jacket, ripped jeans, and hiker boots.

As you probably know, this outfit is my jam; I wear a variation of this almost every day during the fall and winter.

In fact, yesterday I wore a grey v-neck sweater with different jeans, black hiker boots, and this same jacket. I didn’t even think about it being one of my 5 ways to wear a grey sweater.

For this look, I’m back in a turtleneck, but of course any grey sweater works. I really like the combination of the light wash jeans, medium grey sweater, and grey hiking boots.

The washed red jacket is the icing on the cake. While you can certainly wear any coat with this outfit, I really like the pop of color.

My REI jacket is on sale again, by the way, and with free shipping! It comes in a wide range of colors, and it’s lightweight but deceivingly warm. It runs true to size; I have the small.

Shop More Colorful Coats:

Hiker boots are on trend right, now, and they keep this classic look modern.

I often tuck my jeans into my hiker boots, but with the height of these boots and the length of these jeans, they weren’t quite tucking, so I cuffed them.

Cuffing jeans can chop up the leg line and make you look stumpy, but since there isn’t much color contrast between the jeans, the cuff, and the boots, this works without throwing off the proportions of the outfit.

I did front-tuck the sweater, though, to shorten the upper body and keep a good balance.

And because this look is so casual, I kept it simple with studs for earrings, but you could certainly add a necklace or scarf.

Outfit Details:

grey turtlenecks // skinny jeans // Caslon hiker boots // REI red puffer

If you’re shopping for grey turtlenecks…

Lord + Taylor has an amazing sale on their cashmere right now, and their essential turtleneck comes in a bunch of great neutrals, including charcoal. (I recommend sizing up if in between.)

I’ve also heard good things about this slouchy turtleneck at Old Navy, and it has no wool for those who are allergic.

On the other end of the spectrum, my Equipment cashmere turtleneck was an end-of-season sale purchase last year. It was springtime, and I really wasn’t in the turtleneck mood, but that’s time to make investment purchases like this one. When winter weather finally rolled around this year, I was really glad I had it. This year’s version is 15% off at Zappo’s, but I expect better sales at the end of the season.

Good mid-range cashmere brands are Nordstrom’s Halogen (this one is suuuper soft, and it’s TTS) and Bloomies’ Aqua and C by Bloomingdale’s (size up in these.)

At the moment, you’re going to get the most bang for your buck from the Lord + Taylor or the Aqua. FYI, the Aqua comes down to $60 if you’re a Loyallist and $53 if you shop with your Bloomies card. I love the super long ribbed cuffs, and the quality is better than L+T, in my opinion.

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

Grey Sweater and White Jeans Outfit for Fall or Winter

Happy hump day, friends! This week, I’m styling 5 outfits with a grey sweater, and today I’ve got a grey sweater and white jeans outfit for fall or winter.

I love the combination of white and grey and denim — see this look from last spring with a grey sweater, blue jeans, and a white denim jacket. Today I’m styling a similar look, but it’s a grey sweater and white jeans, a denim jacket, and snake print booties.

The grey sweater is the same Halogen cashmere crewneck that I styled on Monday with a puffer vest, black jeans, and grey trainers; but this time I decided to incorporate white jeans because they’re fresh and crisp and unexpected.

I also added a necklace this time. I really like how it breaks up the expanse of grey in front, and also the shape is flattering and draws attention to the waist. These white skinnies from Madewell have a 9″ rise, and they’re nice and thick and not see-through at all.

To add even more color and texture to the look, I added a plaid blanket scarf. My rust color was just restocked, but that grey combo would also look great with this outfit.

Grey Sweater with White Jeans and a Plaid Scarf

The snakeskin booties at another element of interest — the texture and pattern really takes this look up a notch, yet they’re still casual and comfortable.

In fact, these booties are probably the most comfortable ones I own. They are leather lined and super cushiony inside, and the 3″ block heel is stable and walkable.

Finally, the denim jacket adds an additional layer of warmth as well as another point of interest to this grey sweater and white jeans outfit.

If you’re in the market for a classic denim jacket, I can’t recommend this one highly enough. It’s soft and stretchy, it has a nice shape through the mid-section, and it’s the perfect medium shade of indigo blue.

It may be too cold where you are to wear this outfit right now, but it’s a great look for fall or early spring, and you can ditch the denim  jacket and wear a coat for now.

Outfit Details:

grey cashmere crew // white jeans // denim jacket // snake print booties // grey crossbody (old) // scarf

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

Classy Turtleneck Outfit for Winter Date Night

I’m back with Day 2 of 5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater, and this time I’m styling a classy turtleneck outfit for a winter date night look.

You may not immediately think of a cashmere turtleneck for date night, but when it’s the middle of winter and freezing cold, I’m willing to accept the challenge.

To jazz it up a bit, I paired my grey turtleneck with black coated jeans. The coated denim instantly elevates the look, and keeps me warm as well as chic!

If you don’t have coated denim, black jeans or skinny pants would work just fine. I recommend skinny pants over a more conservative trouser style because this is date night, not a work function… Although, if you are going to a work function… you can totally swap out the jeans for trousers to make this look office-appropriate.

Because the turtleneck is plain, I added a layered station necklace. Mine is no longer available, but I linked a few options below.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing a classy turtleneck outfit for a winter date night look with coated jeans and pumps.

I also wore burgundy suede pumps. I considered over-the-knee boots for added warmth, but I have another look in this series with OTK boots, and I really like the suede pumps with the coated denim.

The burgundy is fun for a subtle pop of color, but black would work just as well… or snake print or leopard. Since the rest of the outfit is neutral, pretty much anything works.

And if you’re really worried about being cold, a dressy black suede bootie works too.

Then, to really turn it up a notch and bring the drama factor, I added a faux leopard fur coat.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing a classy turtleneck outfit with a leopard coat for a winter date night.

This coat is absolutely gorgeous, and definitely brings this classy turtleneck outfit into the date night category.

It’s also very warm. #winning

(See the part above about it being winter and freezing.)

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing a classy turtleneck outfit with a leopard coat for a winter date night.

I actually have a New Year’s Party this weekend, and I might wear this exact outfit. I love how it’s both cozy and edgy, practical and dramatic, and still classy.

Jo-Lynne Shane wearing a classy turtleneck outfit with a leopard coat for a winter date night.

Outfit Details:

grey cashmere turtlenecks // black coated jeans (option) // pumps (option) // faux leopard fur coat // similar necklaces here and here

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photos: Alison Cornell

Fall/Winter Fashion

5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater: Puffer Vest and Trainers

Happy Monday, my friends! I know it’s already January 6th, but somehow today feels like the official beginning of the new year, am I the only one? I’m feeling refreshed and inspired and ready to go!

I mentioned in my New Year’s Eve Thoughts that I want the focus of 2020 to be on quality over quantity. Rather than sharing so many new items, I want to help you build a wardrobe of quality pieces that can be reworked in different ways. In that vein, today I’m launching a new series…

5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater

5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater: A New Style Series by Jo-Lynne Shane

Rather than compiling five outfits into one post, I decided to spread them out over the week and dedicate a post to each outfit. See all FIVE posts HERE!

Why A Grey Sweater?

I chose a grey sweater for this series because I’m assuming most of you already have a grey sweater or two in your closet. If you don’t, I’m going to suggest you invest in a one… or at least another neutral. If grey isn’t your thing, you can substitute ivory or camel or taupe or black for any of these looks. But I personally love a great sweater. I have, um, several… 

Grey is pretty much universally flattering, and it looks good with so many colors, as well as other neutrals.

I recommend investing in a good quality grey sweater, either cashmere or a wool/cashmere blend. If you’re allergic, acrylic or cotton (or a blend of both) can work just as well, but I love the warmth and softness of a quality cashmere, so that’s what I usually wear.

Shop Grey Sweaters Here:

For this look, I styled this cashmere crewneck sweater, but you could just as easily wear a grey v-neck or turtleneck sweater with this look. I included some of each in the shopping widget above.

This is a Nordstrom Made Brand, and their cashmere gives you a good bang for your buck, especially if you buy it on sale. It’s not as thick or luxe as some higher end brands, but it’s soft and warm and should last a few seasons of regular use.

Grey Sweater with a Puffer Vest and Trainers

For the first of 5 ways to wear a grey sweater, I styled my grey cashmere crew with a black puffer vest, black jeans, and grey/black trainers. I was going for a casual-chic monochromatic look.

5 Ways to Wear a Grey Sweater: with a Puffer Vest and Trainers

Because the look is casual, I didn’t bother with a necklace, but it could probably use one — or a scarf is an option as well.

This vest is a great price, and I like the combination of the shiny front  and back, and the mesh side plackets. It also has a packable hood and a stand collar for extra warmth.

You can find it at Lord + Taylor and Saks Off Fifth, and it also comes in burgundy and white.

See how I styled a similar outfit with a burgundy puffer vest last winter — I also wore black jeans, but I went with black booties and a grey turtleneck.

I chose black jeans to keep a monochromatic color palette, but blue jeans would work too. I might even wear this with white jeans!

These trainers are from Everlane, and they’re currently on sale as part of their Choose What You Pay promo. They’re verrrry comfortable and have great support.

I bought them with Paris in mind… I know I’ll want dark sneakers to wear with outfits very much like this. I recommend going with your usual sneaker size, which may be a half size larger than your typical size for boots or pumps.

I love this sporty look for running errands or sightseeing or volunteering at an outdoor event, or other situations where I’ll be outside and don’t want to deal with a coat.

The luxe cashmere sweater creates a pleasing juxtaposition with the casual sneakers and outdoorsy puffer vest, plus, the sneakers are practical for when I’m going to be on my feet for a few hours.

Outfit Details:

grey cashmere crew // black skinnies (budget option) // black puffer vest (also at Off Fifth) // grey trainers

See more 5 Ways to Wear posts, and if you liked this post, please feel free to share on Pinterest or your favorite social media network!

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photos: Alison Cornell


Coffee Talk: Weekend Recap & My First Week of IF

Good morning! How was your weekend? Have you de-Christmassed your house yet?

We took down our live tree last weekend, and I spent Friday taking down the garland from the foyer staircase. I never did get my skinny tree in the kitchen put away… maybe this afternoon.

I’m definitely leaving the tree in the family room for a while, though. It’s so pretty, and the colors are all silver and gold, so it looks more wintry than Christmassy.

I still have the village in my foyer too. A few of you asked for pictures, so here it is. I have more pieces, but I just chose a few favorites for this console table this year.

(And there is no reason why I only put the white felt under one house — I was just too lazy to comb through my bins of holiday decor to find more.)

I spent most of yesterday on the computer. It was chilly and rainy and the perfect day for staying indoors. I’m not sure what happened to our snow this year, but it sure better not all come in March! #youknowitwill

Having one less post to prepare this week gave me the opportunity to delve into other blog-related projects that I haven’t had time to tackle. I’m working on updating old posts that are still relevant, creating new pins, re-pinning, and internal linking within my own posts to try to increase page views and get new eyes on my content.

That may sound like a bunch of mumbo-jumbo to most of you, but it’s all part of the job!

I also need to plan out my editorial calendar for 2020. You guys have given me some great content ideas, and I want to make sure to implement them.

My most notable accomplishment yesterday, however, was not job-related. I’m happy to announce that I completed my 2019 Family Photo Album and got it ordered!!!!

I didn’t even get 2018 finished until just a few weeks ago, so to have 2019 complete and on order makes me SO happy!!!  Now I can start 2020 with a blank slate.

Before you ask, I use Apple Photos to store and organize all our family pictures, so I designed and ordered my photobook through their Mimeo app — which is basically the same company that always did Apple iPhoto albums. They’ve always been my favorite for good quality albums and a clean, uncomplicated design interface.

After a day of computer work, I was ready to get a change of scenery, so Paul and I decided to go out for happy hour at a local restaurant & bar we like to frequent. It was nice to get out, just the two of us, and talk uninterrupted.

Plus, I always love a good charcuterie board! Isn’t this gorgeous? I will say, the cheese selection was a little odd, but it was all delish.

I just threw on a casual outfit — a grey sweater and jeans (shocker!!!) And because it was rainy, I wore my Aquatalia sock booties (which are still 60% off and were restocked in a few sizes after selling out last month.)


In other news, I’ve been doing the intermittent fasting thing for a full week now. I dabbled in it before, but I didn’t really understand it, so I got the book Delay, Don’t Deny. I still need to read the last couple chapters, but I read enough to get the gist.

(Her Facebook Group is a great resource as well. That’s where I got my initial info and found out about the book.)

I realized I needed to shorten my eating window to have any hope of making my weight loss goal, so I’ve been doing 19:5 for the past week and pretty much eating one meal a day. (They call that OMAD.)

I know, it sounds like a ridiculous fad and totally not sustainable. And of course, it flies in the face of all conventional wisdom/(modern science?) about eating regularly and keeping your metabolism moving.

But I’m at the point where something has to give. My body is no longer playing by the rules, and I need something to jumpstart it into cooperating with me again.

And also? I really like wine and cheese. And meat. And the occasional dessert… just a taste is enough, but I don’t want to give up sugar again.

So, I’m giving this a try. Because the concept is, you can eat “whatever you want” during your eating window, and still get the weight loss results and health benefits of a keto diet.

I don’t know that I buy that, but I’m trying it. I mean, why not? It certainly seems to be working for a lot of people.

Now, hear me. I put “whatever you want” in quotes because you definitely cannot binge during that 5-hour window and lose any weight.

But if I’m careful to put nourishing food into my body during that time, I can also enjoy a bowl of potato chips while I’m making dinner, or some of that charcuterie board, or a few bites of dessert… or maybe all of the above, if my dinner is fairly low-carb and I watch my portions.

After a week, I’m down a couple pounds, but I realize at this point, it’s mostly due to calorie restriction. I haven’t been doing this long enough for my body to start breaking down fat cells for energy, but I’m hoping I can get there, and then it will be easier to maintain my happy weight.

Real Talk: I know some of you will tell me I look great, and I appreciate that. I actually hesitated to put all this out here because I know I’m a healthy weight, and I realize some of you are struggling with much bigger health issues and weight loss goals.

I’m actually fairly okay with how I look, but I’m currently at the tippy-tip-top of my regular weight range, and I’m headed into the season where I tend to put on a few pounds.

If I don’t get control of this now, I’ll have to move into the next clothing size, and I’m not interested in buying a new wardrobe. Ha! As if I don’t practically do that every season… #occupationalhazards

But seriously, this is it for me. I’ve been hovering around my “oh, hell no” weight for a few months — the months when I usually lose a few because I’m so busy — and I need to take action.

I thought about downplaying it and not sharing much about what I’m doing, but let’s face it, I’m an over-sharer, and this is a pretty big lifestyle change, so I decided to just put it all out here. If you think I’m crazy, please just keep that to yourself.

Although, it actually sounds like a lot of you practice IF, so I’ll be curious to hear your input.

Got advice? Struggles you want to share? Things you’ve learned? Let me know!

Is it sustainable?

As far as the sustainability of intermittent fasting goes, I’ve actually found it a lot easier than I expected. In fact, it’s kind of a relief.

Because I work from home, I don’t have social events around breakfast or lunch very often. In fact, I’m usually so busy during the day that I don’t want to take time to prepare something healthy to eat, so I fell back on snacking on junk.

With a 19:5 fasting/eating schedule, I just don’t eat for most of the day, and then I “break my fast” around 3PM. I try to eat something nourishing first (lately it’s been some leftover soup or dinner from a day or two before, or I’ll make some tuna salad) and then I might have a bite of something sweet as a reward for making it through my fast.

We eat dinner around 6PM, and I like to have a snack while I’m cooking — a bowl of popcorn or potato chips, or maybe some cheese. I try to close my feeding window by 7PM, or 8 at the latest. Some days my feeding window is 4 hours, sometimes it’s 6, but it’s usually around 5.

Also, I do put a wee bit of heavy cream in my coffee in the mornings… just enough to take the edge off the bitterness. . Yes, I know this is against the rules of a clean fast, but I’m talking a teaspoon at most, usually a little less. (I even measure it.) With two or three cups of coffee, that’s still less than 50 calories total — which some say is okay.

I realize that goes against the Delay, Don’t Deny philosophy, but I’m willing to risk it. Call me a rebel, if you must!

Any-who. I’m sure y’all will have questions, and feel free to ask, but really, if you’re truly interested, just buy this book. Or if you want quick answers, read this article. It seems fairly accurate and even addresses the opponents of IF at the end.

Only time will tell if IF works for me, or if I can stick with it long-term, but I’m gonna give it the old college try.

Well, that was definitely longer than I expected! Long-winded much?

I’m headed out to church in a bit. I have nursery duty, so it will be a casual #ootd.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!