October Try-Ons + Q&A

Hey everyone! Who else is getting this Nor’easter today? It’s been an incredibly rainy year here in Pennsylvania, so you’d think I’d be used to it by now, but we were having such a nice reprieve with gorgeous fall weather for the past week or so, and I’m pretty bummed to be looking at rain again. Hopefully it will pass quickly and we’ll have some pretty fall leaves left to enjoy.

I haven’t shared try-on pictures in a while, so I thought I’d show you some of the things that have come in the mail this week.

I ordered a bunch of stuff from LOFT last week during their Friends & Family Sale, and I also have some things from J.Crew Factory and Nordstrom to share with you. Plus I put out a Q&A on Instagram, and I’ll be sharing those answers at the end of this post.

SALE ALERT >> LOFT has most of the store marked 30-50% off this weekend, and best of all, FREE SHIPPING! This promo ends tomorrow (Sunday night) at midnight. Use code HOORAY. 

All descriptions and links are under the pictures.

LOFT Slouchy Joggers // How do we feel about joggers? I don’t hate these, but I’m just not sure where I would actually wear them. They are comfortable, though, and they run true to size. I’m wearing a small.

Verdict: undecided. What do y’all think?

Elbow Sleeve Tee // I was intrigued by this tee because it has a scoop neck, which is hard to find, as well as a straight hemline and no boob pocket. YAY! It’s on the thinner side, though, and I’m not sure I love the elbow length sleeves. I’m wearing a small, and I think I need a medium, especially considering that it will probably shrink. Overall, it’s a nice basic tee for anyone looking for a scoopneck style.

Verdict: returning, but I may try it again in a medium.

Ribbed Pocket Cardigan // I ordered this a while back, but I haven’t featured it yet, and I thought it worked well with the joggers because it has a slightly casual vibe.

Verdict: keep.

Shop this Look:

J.Crew Mercantile Heather V-Neck Pullover Sweater // This is a really cute v-neck pullover that I would typically wear with skinny jeans and booties, but I decided to throw it on with the joggers and mules to see if I could envision myself wearing a leveled up jogger outfit. I’m really not a fan, but I can see that it’s cute… I’m just feeling a little old for it. I also think front-tucking sweaters generally looks stupid, but it’s the only way to make it work with these pants.

Verdict: returning. I don’t think it’s the best color on me, and I have soooo many sweaters. ☺️ It’s a great price, though, and the neckline is really flattering. I recommend it!

Shop this Look:

LOFT Hooded Sweater // This is one of those super soft, stretchy knits that is so comfy and cozy. I love the hooded detail for a sporty vibe, and the split hem and relaxed fit makes it a great weekend sweater for jeans and sneakers or booties. It’s TTS; I’m in the small.

Verdict: keep!

BP. Lance Booties // I just picked up these booties in the black to have a more affordable option to feature in my outfit posts. They have a similar styling to my Rag & Bone booties. (I got those on sale last year, but still a splurge.)

These are under $100, and they’re leather and very comfortable. I love the arced topline — I think that feature is so flattering, and it just adds a little something extra to an otherwise plain bootie. The cognac color is really good too… in fact, I’m tempted to grab those as well since I don’t have any booties in that color and it’s such a great neutral.

Verdict: keep!

Shop this Look:

Caslon Side Slit Convertible Cowl Neck Tunic // I had this last year in plum, and when I saw the red, I snapped it up, thinking it would make a cute holiday sweater. It can be worn as a cowl neck or off-the-shoulder top. I like the neckline, but I wish it were shorter. I’m not a huge fan of the tunic style, but I would like to try it with black leggings and black OTK boots for a more streamlined lower half. It’s true to size, or size down if in between.

Verdict: returning. I’m not crazy about the length on me personally, but it’s a cute and versatile top if you like tunics.

Shop this Look:

LOFT Cowl Neck Tunic Sweater // This top is similar to the one above, but it’s shorter, which I like, and it’s a true cowl neck. It’s a nice, soft fine-gauge cotton knit that’s comfortable and easy to wear, and it comes in a variety of rich fall colors. I say it’s true to size, and I’m in the small, but if you want more of a tunic fit, you could size up.

Verdict: undecided; I have a green cowl neck top already, but it’s a boxier style. I may exchange this for another color.

Shop this Look:

LOFT Leggings in Brushed Sateen // In my attempts to style something other than jeans, I ordered these leggings. They’re really pants with a legging fit, and the brushed sateen is a nice fabric. I did notice the calves were kind of tight, so if you have thicker calves, these may not be for you, but otherwise, they’re stretchy and soft and comfortable. They run TTS, or size down if in between; I’m in the 6.

Verdict: keeping!

Halogen Cashmere Turtleneck // Halogen carries this turtleneck every year, and this year’s is a more relaxed fit. It’s kind of nice for a change, and it’s very cozy and soft and comfortable. I feel like I say this about every sweater I feature… clearly cozy and soft and comfortable is my jam. It runs a little big; I’m wearing the small, and it’s plenty roomy.

Verdict: keeping!

Shop this Look:

LOFT Skinny Utility Pants // These are more pants than leggings, and the fabric has a higher cotton content than the ones above. They both say they have a 28 1/2″ inseam inseam, but these seem shorter. I think it’s because the leg opening is slightly wider, which bothered me at first, but I think they read a little more straight than skinny, which is the way trends are going. They’re TTS; I’m wearing a 6.

Verdict: keeping for now, but not removing the tags just yet. 😊

Shop this Look:

LOFT Leopard Puffer Vest // I went into the LOFT store the other day to pickup an online order, and I spotted this leopard vest on the table when I walked in. I snapped it up so quickly, you would have thought it was a piece of chocolate cake.

This is SUCH a fun way to wear leopard, and this vest is really lightweight and flattering.

Unfortunately it is NOT included in the sale. I have a feeling it may sell out anyway, and I always tell you guys never to pay full price at LOFT, but I made an exception in this case. If you’re determined to wait, be sure to click that Get Sale Alert button in the shopping widget below, and then you better be checking your Promotions folder every morning because once it does go on sale, it will fly off the shelves.

If you don’t want to risk it, go ahead and order it and keep the tags on, and hope to get a price adjustment when it goes down. (That’s what I’m doing.)

Verdict: Duh. KEEPING!

Shop this Look:

J.Crew Mercantile Rollneck Pullover Sweater // Another cute sweater that comes in several really pretty colors. I’m not sure what my obsession is with green as of late, but I ordered this Frosty Olive. I also love the Cerise and the Ivory, and the Hthr Camel is a nice light shade that’s kind of different. It runs TTS; I’m in a small.

Verdict: returning; it’s cute but I have others I like better.

Shop this Look:

Finally, I have had requests for more affordable rain boots, and I thought these Chelsea rain boots were so cute when I saw them on the J.Crew Factory website, so I ordered a pair. Then someone said they looked just like their Sam Edelman ones, so I decided to order those to compare.

Verdict: Identical.

Besides the gold Sam Edelman emblem on the back, I can’t tell a difference in the least. I actually think the seams on the SE ones are more pronounced, and the J.Crew Factory ones seem better quality, but I can’t know if that is a difference across the board, or just with these two particular items I received.

Both are very comfortable and flattering, and the Chelsea boot style is on trend, so if you’re looking for a pair of affordable short rain boots, I highly recommend either one of these. I’d go with the J.Crew pair for budget reasons.


I realize this post is pretty long already, but I did promise to get to the questions from Instagram, so here we go!

Q // I’m ISO a great neutral color everyday handbag.

A // I’m working on a roundup post for next week. Stay tuned!!!

colorblock sweater with ivory shell - 1

Q // What to wear under cardigans that doesn’t look frumpy? Is there a shell you recommend? I am a teacher, so I’m asking as it pertains to work.

A // I actually have this one in black and ivory, and I really like it. It’s a step above a t-shirt, but it’s not so dressy that you can’t wear it for casual activities. I also like that it has thicker straps so it’s not a cami. I’m wearing it in the picture above.

Q // Do you have different inseams on your jeans for different shoes? Do you hem jeans?

A // My favorite inseam length for skinnies is 28″ and fortunately most ankle length jeans come in that length. I love ankle length jeans because you can wear them with any shoe. I have hemmed jeans for shoes, though — mostly bootcut styles.

Q // How do we balance being trendy with being age appropriate?

A // Hm, I think that’s a very individual thing. Some women can get away with trends that other women probably should skip, due to their personal style aesthetic as well as the culture of the area in which they live. I think that plays a part in this question as well, and it’s a factor that is often overlooked in style blogs. If you live in a more urban area, you can probably get away with some of the funkier trends in a way a woman in a rural community could not, but ultimately it’s more about your personal style than your area. I’m sure I wear things that people around here think are a little over the top, but I’m comfortable in them because I like a bit of an edgy vibe. So yeah, it’s really a subjective thing.

A good rule of thumb, though, is to only incorporate one trendy piece into your outfit. You don’t want to wear all the trends in one look, and that’s true for any age, really, but definitely more so as we get older. I don’t think we ever reach an age at which we should no longer wear trends, but I think we should do so more sparingly as we get older. I hope that helps!

Q // Would you ever try clothing from Talbots? I love their classic style.

A // I haven’t had a lot of luck with them in recent years, but I know some of you like them, so I’ve tried. The problem is, every time I go to order from them, I realize they charge shipping and return shipping, so I always stop short of actually placing an order. It’s just not worth it to pay shipping both ways.

I could go to the store, but our Talbots is located in a place  that’s not very convenient to me, and I would probably have to go back for returns, so… that’s why I never feature them.

I do try to feature the in roundups because I know some of you like them, and I can try to get over there and do some dressing room try-ons. I do recall that they have amazing lighting in their dressing rooms, so that’s a plus! Ha!

How to Purge Your Closet and Love Your Wardrobe Again

Q // How do I organize and wear what I already have? Also, what to keep and what to toss?

A // You might like my post, How To Purge Your Closet and Love Your Wardrobe Again. I highly recommend going through this process twice a year — spring and fall.

Q // For a formal wedding, should my toenail polish be the same color as my fingernails?

A // I don’t think it matters if they match, but I do like mine to coordinate and work well together. If in doubt, go ahead and match them. It can’t hurt!

Q // What shoes do you wear once the weather is actually cold that aren’t boots or booties?

A // I guess I wear ballet flats/loafers occasionally, or pumps for dress-up, but when it’s really cold, I’m all about the boots. I can’t think of any other options.

Q // Is a midi length skirt or dress ok now with knee boots, or is that passé?

A // I think you can totally wear it that way — I would!

Q // If you could only wear one coat all winter, which one would you choose?

A // That’s a tough one because there isn’t one coat I would wear everywhere. I love my quilted jacket (shown above), but some occasions call for a dressier coat, and that one wouldn’t be appropriate. That said, I live a pretty casual lifestyle so I find myself wearing it about 95% of the time, so I’ll go with that!

Here are some examples:

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41 thoughts on “October Try-Ons + Q&A

  1. I also ordered the Loft skinny utility pants in the same color, and just tried them on after reading your post. Mine also stick out a bit at the bottom, so would love to know if you decide to keep them and what type of shoes you will wear. I can cuff the hem to wear a few different booties, but was hoping to wear them with slip on sneakers or flats as well and not sure I will like the leg opening for that. Looking forward to hearing your ideas and am also investigating having them taken in at the bottom if possible.

  2. We’ve been looking at those JCrew rain boots for my daughter in college. I’m so happy you did a comparison and they are good. I love the joggers and think they’d be awesome for travel or rainy days at home. The striped sweater is my favorite. LOVE it.

  3. Hi Jo-Lynne!  Thank you SOOOO much for doing this post!  I always try to comment on these types of posts because they are my FAVORITES!  I love it when you show try-on sessions because otherwise I would overlook items in stores!  My favorite in this round up is the leopard print vest.  I saw that in Loft when I was shopping in NYC last week and passed on it.  You may have changed my mind!!!  🙂  

  4. I just saw the photo of you in your winter coat with the plaid scarf…..  What coat is that???  Can you provide a link to it?  LOVE that one!!!  That’s totally my personal style- I lean heavily towards “preppy”.  🙂 

  5. Love this post – I love your loft try on sessions! I also picked up the grey hooded sweater! It is so soft 🙂 I also really like the joggers on you. 

  6. I got those J Crew Factory rain boots a few weeks ago and I agree that they are comfy and cute, but I can’t figure out how to style them. The shaft seems too high to wear with my regular ankle jeans and they look silly tucked in. Can you style them sometime a couple different ways?

  7. Hey- love the vest & all the looks today! Are you wearing a Med or small in the vest?  I want one!! 😬Also, can you wear a rain boot all day? Just wondering for work comfort reasons. Thanks! 

  8. Oh I love the try on sessions, such great ideas. I personally love the joggers. I searched high and low here where I am and found a black crop pair which I am actually wearing now. They are great around the house super comfy and if I have to run out real quick to the grocery store or drug store, I will just throw on a denim jacket with white t shirt, and my white converse. Now that its getter colder they will be more for around the house. I like the length your wearing and may have to look into those. I would definitely keep. I actually really liked the J Crew Mercantile sweater on you, for the color too. I am only 5 feet 3 inches so tunics I usually keep just for leggings. If not too much of me is cut off… Is there a rule of thumb.. I love all your sweaters you’ve shown, must be hard to make a decision… We have had a few couple days of cold weather but its warming up to double digits today just in time for the Nor Easter we are getting but it will be all rain and wind… Sunny and 65 for Monday thought. Crazy weather, no wonder I need so many coats. HA!!

  9. Girl- I completely laughed out loud when you said you snatched that leopard vest up like a piece of chocolate cake!! I’m still smiling! You’re a girl after my own heart in terms of leopard and cake! I agree, that loft leopard vest will definitely sell out. It’s the perfect color combination, scale of pattern and neutral. In your try in sessions I appreciate that you show the length of items with the side view. So many things are labeled ‘tunic’ and for those of us who are short waisted and pear shaped – some of these items fit appropriately and some of course, do not. One of the frustrating things about shopping online is that the models are so tall, and the length of items is quite different on this 5’3” frame, even when ordered in petite. Anyway- all that to say that I really loved this entire post! Hope you have a great weekend!

  10. Ooh love that colorblocked/striped sweater from the under-the-sweater question post!  Where ever did you find it?!

    1. Just wanted to let you know that I found this striped sweater on Amazon. Loved it so much  I had to have one and it’s only $25!

  11. Hi- love this post!  Are you wearing the small or medium in the leopard vest? I want one! 😬 Also, how do those rain boots hold up during an eight hour day— are they comfortable enough for that do you think?  

  12. Great post!! I love almost everything in the try-on session! Ugh! What to get?!? On the joggers, I love the look but not for going out (for me.) I also work at home and this is what I wear all winter on days I stay in all day to work. Then if I run out I throw in jeans or something. Thanks for all the info! One of my favorite posts in a while! 

  13. Great post. You should definitely buy those BP booties in cognac. I have and love them, I bet you’ll wear them all the time especially if you don’t have any other cognac ones. 

    Where is that gorgeous burgundy scarf from that you’re wearing in the second to last photo? 

      1. Thanks! What a price. I may order that. 

        Also just picked up that LOFT leopard vest today. It’s even better in person – the light weight really sold me on it and it has such a nice feel to it. Love it. 

  14. I see joggers on some young mothers. They push them up on the leg some. Cute on them but I’m passing. To me it’s just as easy to put on a pair of skinnies.
    I liked the tee with the longer sleeves on you. It fit perfectly and checked all the boxes. 
    The loft hooded sweater was my fave. Cute!  The rest are probably similar to ones you already have in your closet. So, for me that’s a Keep.
    Love your Burberry jacket!!!

  15. I love this type of post!  As I have mentioned before, you and I have the same body type, so it’s very helpful to see things on you first, plus you give me ideas on what to buy and how to style it. I really like the rain boots and will probably order them. I’ve never been a fan of puffer vests and don’t own one, but after seeing the leopard on you, my mind just might have been changed!  Thank you so much for all the detail you give and the trouble you go to. You are my favorite blogger!

  16. Thanks for sharing all the different looks. I love the joggers on you! They are great for road trip travel or casual days at home. Its a nice change from yoga pants. Hope you are able to tackle your “to do” list on a rainy day. I dug up my vegetables garden so have to figure out what to do with 5 lbs of red beets and kale 😂

  17. I think the joggers are cute! I got a pair of joggers last winter that I really enjoyed wearing. I did wear them out to run to Target or the grocery occasionally. I think they look best with a very casual fleece top or a t-shirt. And I usually wear mine with my Nike athleisure sneakers…you know the ones that look athletic-y but aren’t actually supportive enough for running. 🙂 I think to dressed up joggers look best when they are a different material such as silk or cotton sateen rather than a knit.

    I got that gray LOFT hooded sweater and it really is so soft! I need to try it on again and make sure it’s not too boxy before I remove the tags. These try-on posts are some of my favorites. It makes it so much easier to shop (especially online) when I can see how things look on you! Thanks!

  18. Really enjoyed this post on a nice Sunday afternoon and I also made a few Loft returns this morning. The cowl neck tunic kind of hugged my bottom so I returned it. I love tunics but they need to be lose fitting in the hips. I also liked the white tshirt and now have it in my bag for free shipping. Yay! Enjoy your day. 

  19. I am very interested in the mixed jersey tank from Ann Taylor that you are wearing with the Madewell cardigan. How does the sizing run? What size did you get? I find I am typically 1 size larger that you are.

    Thank you!
    Barb Jacobson

  20. I know it wasn’t the point of the picture, but I love that color-blocked sweater, and with those boots, wow! Thanks for sharing all the questions, it’s always fun!

  21. So I couldn’t find where you announced the winner anywhere in the blog today. I’m sure it’s me I probably missed it. With my poor tech skills or hey I could blame it on my age 

  22. Chiming in late, but I loved the post and particularly loved the joggers on you, so I thought it was worth a comment.  What didn’t you like about the joggers and the orange sweater?  I thought you looked great (love that orange on you).  I got myself a pair of joggers last year at a lulu lemon after christmas sale.  I was a little nervous cuz maybe I’m too old and all that, but I enjoy them.  They are more comfortable and cozy than jeans (and I live in jeans), but for me at least, more presentable to wear out and about than leggings or sweatpants.  I don’t wear them a ton, but I enjoy them and am glad I got them.  I hope you haven’t already sent them back….

  23. Lots of cute outfit options here! I really like the joggers on you. I bought a pair from Ann Taylor and wore them out for errands a couple times. I feel they are too thin for winter though. 

    I bought the utility pants and returned them. Wasn’t crazy about the style plus they were too big (it’s getting rather annoying taking 3 different sizes depending on style!!) I bought the leggings in store and love them! Same with the leopard vest.

    Those rainboots are super cute!

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