Casual Mom Style 01.11.12

This week has been sorta hit or miss in the fashion department. I hope you’re in an opinionated mood right now because I have a few questions for ya.

First of all, I have to let you in on a little secret. I am becoming addicted to activewear. Cute activewear, mind you, but activewear nonetheless. This is my go-to outfit as of late.

My husband picked out that sweatshirt. Didn’t he do a good job? He gave it to me for Christmas because I wanted something to throw on over my gym clothes, and he liked the fact that I can be seen from a mile away when I’m running on the road. I like how it’s longer than most and it is shaped through the waist area but not tight.

The pants are new too. I got them at Athleta on their after Christmas sale. I will be singing my Ode to Athleta on Friday so you’ll have to wait and see all the cute activewear I picked up on sale, but truly, I could live in their stuff forever and be perfectly happy. These pants are their Organic Cotton Salamba Pant, and they are absolutely fantastic, as well as ON SALE!

Okay, so the point of these posts is to encourage us stay-at-home mom types to get OUT of our pajamas and yoga pants, so let’s move on.

I wore this outfit to a casual neighborhood holiday gathering. (Yes, it was just last weekend; we were late fitting in our holiday soirée this year, but we fit it in, we did!)

(Pardon the shadows. And the strange camera angle.) I picked up this top at Banana Republic because I thought it was the perfect mix of casual and festive. (The stripes aren’t gray, they are a silver metallic thread. Very fun.) And also? IT’S A PATTERN, Y’ALL! Banging out my New Years Goals, yes I am. The lighting doesn’t really show the outfit very well, but those are my black velvety soft cords and my Dansko Brinkley boots, and the jewelry is Stella & Dot.


This outfit is my attempt at adding color AND pattern into my wardrobe. When I saw this tank, I ordered it immediately. I’m a huge fan of the Banana Republic Timeless Tanks, and I love coral so this purchase was a no-brainer. I threw it on to meet a friend at the mall and put it with my favorite skinny jeans and my gray drapey sweater. I was sure it was a great little pop of color and pattern in one of my ordinary outfits . . . until I uploaded these pictures and saw the outfit all put together.

WOWZAS! That’s a lot of color and pattern in an otherwise very monotone outfit. I think I can do better . . . but I’m not sure what else to wear with it. Or perhaps I should just put it away for spring. Thoughts???

Finally, this is a sweater I picked up at Nordstrom Rack a few months ago without trying it on. I got it home and gave it a test drive and immediately put it back in the bag to return it. Well, it sat and sat and I finally looked at the receipt and realized it was beyond its return date so I put it in my dresser. It’s been sitting there until Saturday when I tried it on again. And I rather liked it. I think. Or maybe not. I’m not sure.

My husband says I look like a bat.

My 12-year-old son just looked at me and shook his head and snickered.

My 6-year-old daughter said I looked beautiful.

WHO to believe??

What say you, oh wise internets?

I am {CLEARLY} undecided.

Meanwhile, head on over to The Pleated Poppy and BonBon Rose Girls for more What I Wore Wednesday fun.

Join The Conversation

68 Responses

  1. I think the last sweater is really cute as long as you don’t stick your arms straight out and yell, “I am bat girl!” I know not saying that will be hard for you but I really think you can pull through with this. I personally am not a gray wearing person but you pull those colors off really well. I say keep it!

  2. I like that last two outfits-the pop of color and pattern is nice and I like the “bat” shirt. I’ve learned if a tween boy laughs…its definitely okay, if a tween boys likes it….remember he’s a tween and “bless his heart”;-)

  3. I like the sweater – I thought big drapy sleeves like that were in? It’s also very flattering on you, I couldn’t pull it off, I’m too big busted.

    Also, I really like the floral print tank mostly because it’s an unexpected surprise in the dead of winter. Kinda like finding a flower growing out if the sidewalk in a big city :). I can see why you might think its a bit much for winter, but really, it’s so bold. Maybe try it with black pants/black sweater – could it be the other colors/textures is what’s throwing you off?

    1. I think they are “in” but they are REALLY big, lol. I wear a lot of dolman sleeves, but they narrow at the wrists, unlike these that are just huge all the way down.

      Yeah, I was wondering about the tank with black. I feared it would stick out even more but perhaps it’s the texture, not the color, as you suggest, that feels off.

  4. I’ve always been big into activewear and trying to get myself out of it. I’ll be interested to check out those Athleta pants. My go to activewear pants are by Nike and they are awesome. They are sort of that wicking material but flare at the bottom. I wear them everywhere and have 3 pairs (2 black and 1 navy). But I must say, I love love love your second outfit with the striped top from banana. And I also really love the “bat” sweater – I think it’s really cute and can wear so many accessories with it (and your hair looks great in that photo too).

    1. Thank you! That WAS a good hair day. I was so irritated b/c I was just running to Modell’s and to Peace A Pizza to grab dinner. I took the bat sweater off and just wore a sweatshirt, lol. But my hair looked awesome! Wish I knew how to do that every day.

      1. I have to say that I love how you always take the time to respond to many of your comments – it is a very personal touch that makes readers feel that your blogging is interactive. I don’t comment too often on any of the blogs that I follow but when I do you are the only one that shows that you read them – thanks!

    1. Hm, interesting analysis. LOL. I have a few other pix that my husband took and I look silly so I went in the bathroom and took these. I think it was actually my hair and makeup that made me feel confident that day, or maybe it was the sum total of that AND the sweater. I was feeling a little sassy! LOL.

  5. I like the last shirt, very chic. I think it wouldn’t be very practical for me with doing stuff with littles all day, but I think it is fabulous. The sweater/tank combo is fine, although it is a summer-y print, so I get your hesitation.

  6. Love the bat sweater and the bright tank. I wonder if you are over-thinking the color of the tank; I think you’re wearing it well.

  7. I love the bat sweater.

    Here’s my opinion on the tank (you asked for it 🙂 )… I like the tank but not the outfit and I don’t think that the tank is the problem with the outfit. I don’t like the darker grey sweater with the lighter grey Uggs. The colors are too close but not quite and the sweater is too long for the Uggs (at least I think that they are Uggs…). The points of the sweater come almost down to the boots and when you add in the bright tank, your eye does not know where to go – drawn down by the sweater to the boots but the bright tank… Get what I’m saying?

    I think that the tank would be great with a black cardigan (open) with a skinny belt and ballet flats and jeans.

    1. ahhhhhh…. I think you’re right.

      i love the gray sweater and the gray boots sooooo much that I often wear them together b/c they are just so cozy, but I think you have a point about them not working together.

      so totally trying the outfit you suggested tomorrow when I meet a friend for breakfast. will post a pic next week! 🙂

      1. The grays together do not bother me but it is the shirt with the grays. There doesn’t appear to be any gray in the sweater to make it ‘go’. Someone else mentioned the dark color of the sweater vs. the light shirt. A sweater with lighter or more color would do it and a change of shoes to something less “heavy”.

  8. I love the “bat” sweater! It’s something different and I think it looks terrific on you! I agree it would look even better with a long necklace.

  9. I like the outfit with the colorful tank! But I love color so I am always having to force myself to buy a few neutral pieces so I can mix things up. We must be fashion opposites!

    Most days, I look pretty much like that outfit with the colorful tank or else I am wearing tennis clothes. But lately, I don’t know what has come over me, I have been dressing up more. Perhaps it is a charade or perhaps I’m moving from the “mom of little kids” phase to the “mom of big kids phase”, but here’s the real reason…

    I have purposefully designed my life so that I don’t have to work in an office and be dressed up. I’m glad I have the flexibility to wear jeans or play tennis in the middle of the day. However sometimes, I feel frustrated that people don’t seem to value my time because I am “just at home all day”. So a few times recently when I have had meetings or events, I have dressed up just a tad nicer than jeans – black slacks or a skirt and boots, a few nicer jewelry pieces. When I walk in, someone will say, “You look nice. You must have a busy day today!” or “oh, thank you for coming! Did you come right from work”? Yep. I did.

  10. Casual is in! I agree with your daughter you do look beautiful and so comfortable. All your outfits seem to be a perfect fir for you.

  11. I think we all need to wear some athletic clothes sometimes!! We can’t wear perfectly put together outfits everyday-so yeah to the comfy clothes!!!! I LOVE the bat wing sweater. I have one similar, I sometimes wear a tissue/thin long sleeved tshirt under it too, maybe a black one? I think tossing on a long necklace, either gold or silver. Sometimes I also put together 2 long necklaces that are kind of thinner to have to different patterns. (like a small chain and one that has small circles) people always seem to notice when I put two neclaces on, and they say it looks nice! I think you look adorable!

    1. I wondered about something under it but I didn’t want it to interfere with the neckline of the sweater so I wore a tank. But I do think something long-sleeved would add a nice element to the ensemble as well. Loe the idea of 2 necklaces too. Hmm… I need more necklaces!

  12. I like the bat sweater!

    The cute tank is a nice vibrant pop, but it seems to be being dragged down to me by the dark swingy sweater and boots. Maybe a lighter colored (winter white would be cute, or even a dark yellow), shorter cardi or a structured jacket?

  13. I LOVE your last sweater, the bat-girl-style…. Oh, your hubs is fun, I never thought about the simil… hahahahahah. Any way if you want to make a twist on it, try with a long necklace, or a long sleeved turtleneck in some bright color, like fucsia or coral, or maybe both, blouse and necklace… Anyway, really is beautiful that sweater!

  14. Definitely wear the tank in spring, it’s really lovely. The color is great and the pattern isn’t distracting.

    I think I would like the outfit better with gray flats instead of boots to elongate your torso. The boots maybe cut the look off? It’s not bad at all, in fact it looks great, but that’s what I would change if I had to.

  15. I see others in the bat sweaters and always think they look lovely but I don’t think I could pull it off.I I’d probably feel like a bat! I agree with the others, you look fabulous in that picture. That’s what I noticed first. I never would have thought bat either if you hadn’t mentioned it!

    I love that sweatshirt too. I really want to find some cute athletic wear that I feel comfortable going out and about it for those days when you just want to be comfy.

  16. Haha! It will probably always be referred to as the “bat sweater” now! I really like it! It is the day that you look the prettiest and your hair and makeup DO look great! Add a necklace and you are good to go out!

  17. So glad you showed us your go-to outfit as I’m usually in comfy clothes like that myself more days than not. I know we’re supposed to try and dress more on a daily basis but it’s just so not realistic! Unless of course, we have all the time in the world – which no mom does ; ) The Banana tank is so pretty – try wearing it w/a pair of jeans and a blazer/jacket. Might help to cut the pattern if you felt it was too bold. Either way, very pretty! Rack sweater is great! Agree that a necklace would be the perfect touch and it’s great cause you can layer underneath it or carry into spring just as it is in the picture! Great finds.

    1. I never thought of a blazer (I don’t have one) but that is a good idea! There is a silpada necklace with lots of purple in it that I have my eye on to go with that bat sweater. I think I may need to order…

  18. I love the outfit you wore to the holiday party 🙂

    Someday, when I can afford new clothes, I want to dress like you 😀

    1. Aw thanks you are sweet! I have a friend who always looks put together who does a lot of shopping at a local consignment store. It takes a lot more time, I think, but she does find some great stuff. I should get her to guest post about her tricks.

  19. If you have an off white or cream cardigan i would try wearing that with the new tank. I love the color of the tank, but I’m not sure that I like the cream in it with the gray. I do think the necklace you picked goes really well with it! I’ll be interested to see if you do anything else with it next week!

      1. I don’t have a lighter one either, but my sister does and wore it almost the WHOLE time she was here visiting me after Christmas. It’s now at the top of my shopping list, but in the 1 hr I’ve been shopping since she was here I couldn’t find any!

  20. I like that Nordstrom Rack top! I’d totally wear it!!!!!! And I am (secretly) with you…love love love athletic wear. For me, its just in the winter months. Its so cozy and comfy and warm.

  21. I love the “bat” sweater and good hair and makeup always help!

    I also really like the tank, but I think the boots are too heavy, I think thats the problem… maybe a pair of flats or heels or something “lighter”. I’d like to see it with just a shoe change and also with a sweater change, do you have a cream or white or navy… ??? Try it again please 🙂

  22. well I LOVE the bad t-shirt. I adroe those in the summer wearing! They are sooooo awesome! I also do them with a longsleeve under in autumn and winter… Always nice!!!!

  23. Love the second top, from BR. I agree w/others that there is something “off” about the third outfit. Like the tank w/bright color and pattern but it just doesn’t go w/sweater and boots. Maybe b/c they’re different shades of gray. Not sure what it is but keep trying b/c it’s cute and will be especially cute in spring and summer. Love the “bat sweater” and think it looks great on you. Your hair and makeup look amazing in this photo as well. Try a long necklace with this sweater, I think it will take it up a notch.

    One last comment…I agree w/other person about how nice it is that you reply and respond to your commenters. Often I’ll leave a comment for a blogger and not hear a word back and that makes me not want to reply again. I love the bloggers whom I feel I can have a “dialogue” with, and that includes you. 🙂

    1. I tried the tank on with a khaki colored fitted jacket that I have and decided that it just looks too summery. I’ll save it for spring. 🙂

      And I love the conversations in the comments and email that result from this blog!! I wouldn’t have it any other way. 🙂

  24. Love the casual looks and especially love the last one ON YOU but it wouldn’t be right on me at all.

    Confession :

    When I see one of your “What I Wore” posts in my reader I always stop to see in case you are wearing my bracelet!!!

  25. I love your style, very sassy, classy, like to see more of you, I like the “bat style” looks fashionable. love wearing nice clothes, have the time o dress up, but no time in make-up, takes forever to me. 🙂

  26. I LOVE the sweater. But I’m a huge fan of bat wing tops because I find them very flattering on me. Anyway if you ask me it is definitely a keeper. If you don’t like it, send it my way 😉

    1. I totally would, except I think I’m gonna keep it. I’ll at least wear it out once and letcha know. 😉

      I definitely need a necklace. LIke maybe Silpada’s Sterling Silver & Mixed Material Necklace?? You have to write it in, it won’t let you link right to the page.

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