Archive for the ‘Fashion’ Category

How to Shop Secondhand for Your Fashion Capsule Wardrobe

Monday, March 23rd, 2015

shop-secondhand-for-capsule-wardrobe-header.fw

Last week I was so excited to show off my Spring capsule wardrobe with you all. I got some questions and emails regarding the capsule wardrobe and one thing people wanted to know the most is how I was able to pull of my wardrobe secondhand. Today I wanted to share how I did manage to keep my capsule wardrobe 90% secondhand and how you can do the same with your wardrobe.

I have always loved to shop secondhand for clothing and the fun of that just has never ended for me. There is such a thrill in the hunt for the perfect item. When I was a girl we would visit a store in my great-grandma’s town that had barrels of clothing to dig through. I remember my mom shuddering and me clapping my hands with glee. I loved to hunt and who knew what treasure you could find at the bottom of a barrel? It could be something really exquisite and rare like J. CREW or BANANA REPUBLIC or ESPRIT or UNITED COLORS OF BENETTON. RARE, RARE, RARE. For a girl who couldn’t afford to upgrade her wardrobe, this possibility thrilled me.

When I was young though I was simply attracted to brand names that I could not afford and deals…oh, THE DEALS. What I ended up with were loads of items that didn’t look good, that didn’t work together, and things I didn’t REALLY love. If only you could have seen the label on the inside though…you might have been impressed.  As an adult, I have learned to be patient, to choose wisely, and to try to be flexible when piecing together a secondhand wardrobe.

The capsule wardrobe requires a well-edited closet, selecting pieces that work together and that can be worn many different ways to maximize your choices. You might think secondhand couldn’t work, but I will share my secret with you…consignment shopping online has transformed the impossible and multiple trips to shops into the possible.

Spring Wardrobe Classics

(source Kendi Everyday)

Start With a Really Good List

The capsule wardrobe relies a lot on wardrobe staples and I had none of these when I started.  Even though secondhand shopping is more affordable than purchasing the items retail, you still must keep your budget in mind. Make a list of items that are important to you to own this year and consider dividing your list into the different capsules. For me, items like a good pair of jeans, a crisp white collared shirt, a black skirt, a black pair of jeans, a jean shirt, and a good blazer were all wardrobe essentials. Consider this list and this list (pictured above) as a good starting point for building your wardrobe.

Build In a Few Trendy Pieces

Once you have covered the basics, you can start jotting down a few of your favorite trends this season that you would like to incorporate. I love this list of Spring trends that include adding a bit of floral, the mixing and matching of bright & bold, a nod to denim, a fresh summer scarf, and the addition of a good clutch.  Obviously, only embrace the trends that really work for you and for your lifestyle, otherwise, it ends up being a pointless task in incorporating these items if you will never wear them.

Always consider the trendy colors of the year to as a way to add a little bit of color to your capsule, while keeping it timeless with still embracing the basics.

Shop Around

There are lots of great online consignment shops out there, you just have to find the right one for you. I have had the best luck on Twice and on thredUP (both of those are affiliate links and will give you $10 towards your first purchase). Here is a list of all of the shops that I have found to do some online consignment shopping.  I have found that a lot of my happiness with a site and what they offer really relies upon their search tool since I like to shop with my list and not blindly hunt for items.

I would say after trying several different companies out for online consignment, my happiness has really been with Twice the most. I like that I have 30 days to try things on and make sure I really love it. I appreciate the convenience of being able to ship my returns without getting charged for shipping or restocking fees.  I feel like I have been able to make smarter decisions and am not keeping items just because I don’t want the expense or hassle of returning them.

Of course, consignment shopping can happen locally too and many consignment shops are on Facebook, sharing and posting some of the best offerings they have in their store. Consider following the shops you love and keeping your eyes peeled for smart purchases for your capsule.

How to Shop Secondhand for Your Fashion Capsule Wardrobe

(source Twice)

Start Shopping With Your List

Once you have a list of items that you really want, shopping for consignment online is a breeze. I begin typing in descriptions of the items I am after and let the hunting for them begin.

Start with your basics and type in the key phrases of what you are looking for.

“Black Skirt”

“Black Pants”

“Shirt Dress”

“Tunic”

Type in the patterns of fabric you are looking for- stripes, gingham, checks, herringbone, floral, chambray…. the possibilities are endless.

How to Shop Secondhand for Your Fashion Capsule Wardrobe

Be a Brand Snob- You Can Afford To

I have become quite the brand snob with my clothing and the reason is simply because I am buying my clothes at a fraction of the cost that I used to. I don’t want to spend the money on a pair of socks from some of the brands that I have been shopping at in their stores, but I can have a whole outfit when I purchase it on consignment…and not feel one bit guilty.

I try not to be too trendy in my capsule wardrobe and so I look to brands that I know will wash well, will have longevity, and  won’t fall apart on me.

Sell It Back

Since you are keeping a well-edited closet with your fashion capsule, you will know right away what hasn’t gotten worn and won’t carry over to the next wardrobe. Consider making some money or credit for the clothes and sell them back to the retailers you purchased them from.  I have this handy resource list on how to make money organizing that closet.

How to Shop Secondhand for Your Fashion Capsule Wardrobe

(source thredUP)

Add In Your Accessories & Shoes Secondhand Too

Not only is buying secondhand great for your wardrobe, but it can be great for shoes, purses, scarves, and belts to compliment your items.  If there is a trend like, “emerald green,” or “floral print,” consider adding these into your wardrobe with accessories instead of with your wardrobe basics. A quick browse on thredUP yields a million floral scarves and at a much better price than the retail stores. These smaller items are a great way to add something trendy without deciding which trends you think will actually stick in your capsule wardrobe.

How to Shop Secondhand for Your Fashion Capsule Wardrobe

Last spring’s buttery Italian suede smoking slippers from J. Crew were available on Twice when I was putting together my capsule. Would I have spent $200 on these for myself? No way!  I can afford a little luxury when they are priced at $60, use my referral credit, and pay a mere $5. YES! This is a luxury that this cheap lady can indulge in. They are beautiful and worth all five dollars and MORE!

The same principle can be applied to that beautiful handbag you have been dreaming of.

This has always been my secret to good shopping…

You can have the beautiful things you always wanted with a little patience- someone is always editing their items and the chances are good that ONE THING you have been dreaming of will be yours one day.   

I waited a whole year for these shoes and it was worth the wait.

What are your tricks for shopping secondhand for your clothing? Feel free to leave them below!

 

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Spring Wardrobe Essentials with Vera Sweeney

Monday, March 16th, 2015

I’m so excited to have my amazing friend, Vera Sweeney, from Lady and the Blog sharing a fantastic list of Spring Wardrobe Essentials with all of us. I respect Vera and her work so very much and she has become one of my go-to resources for making the most of my wardrobe. Check out this great list she created for the m challenge and be sure to use our handy list of wardrobe printables while preparing for your new Spring look! xo

Spring Wardrobe Essentials

Spring is such a great time for fashion. There’s no more hiding. No more bundling. It’s all about embracing the warmer weather and showing off some skin. Because the beginning of the season can be so transitional, there are a few key pieces that every woman should own to ensure that she is ready for any weather that Mother Nature throws her way.

jean jacket

 

The Jean Jacket

I love a great jean jacket because not only can it keep you warm during cooler days, but it can also help you get more wear out of your summer dresses. If you pair a jean jacket with a summer dress and knee high cowboy boots, you suddenly have a seasonally appropriate look that can deconstruct into an entirely different feel.

When the weather gets warmer, remove the jacket and replace the boots with some fun flats. Easy!

The Daily Find: See by Chloe Pleated Dress

 

The Pleated Dress

If you listen to Fashion Week and trends, you know that pleats are coming back strong. Be sure to snag yourself a delicate looking pleated dress for this spring. Opt for a pale color and accessories with a bold clutch. Because we are going for a dainty look, don’t go heavy with jewelry when wearing this style. Instead, choose a simple necklace and skip the bangles.

Summer Scarf

 

The Summer Scarf

I love the summer scarf because it’s the perfect addition to any spring look. It’s the one accessory you can wear anywhere – anytime. And I’m not kidding! Wrap it around any look to add as an extra layer to complete your outfit. Then when it gets cold at night, simply unravel the piece and use it as a shawl. Perfection!

Floral Spring

 

Anything Floral

I know that sounds a bit vague… but it’s true. Spring is all about flowers, right? It makes sense that floral prints would be hot! Pick up pants, skirts, shirts, clutches or shoes. Whatever you like, really! Just don’t wear it all at once. ☺

Mint & Yellow

 

Mix and Match the Bright And Bold

When choosing color combinations for the spring, don’t be afraid to mix color and color. Have a little fun. It doesn’t have to be black mixed with a bright color. You can wear mint with yellow, or orange with blue. Yes! It’s all about stepping outside of your comfort zone and making an effort to be scene. If you need a little practice in this arena, start color combining with your accessories first.

Perfect Clutch

 

The Perfect Clutch

This is one of the most underrated accessories on the block. I live and die for a good clutch but not many women I know own one. Who wants to lug around a hobo or a tote to a restaurant when all you really need is your phone and lipstick? Purchase a sleek looking clutch and call it a day. Trust me! You will get a ton of use out of it! It will be your favorite purchase of the season. I love the red options I highlighted above, but if you really want to keep it simple, a beige clutch goes with everything.

What do you think of the options I selected for you? These spring wardrobe essentials will help kick start your style in the right gear.

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25 Best Wardrobe Planning Printable & Tools

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

25 Best Wardrobe Planning Printables and Tools

As I’ve been upping my fashion game over the past year by becoming intentional with my wardrobe and shopping – and embracing the capsule wardrobe concept – I’ve come across some amazing tools. These printables, guides, and tips have helped me whittle my once out-of-control closet into one that makes sense and helps me feel fashionable every day. So for our M Challenge Focus on Fashion, I thought it would make a great resource for us to bundle these together with even more of the best wardrobe planning printables and tools that are available.

So whether you’re looking to build a wardrobe from scratch, whittle what you have into a capsule closet, or even get ideas for packing smartly for a trip, you’ll find some great tools here to help you! (note: please pin any photos below from the original source)

General Wardrobe Tips & Printables

Build a perfect wardrobe via Into-Mind

Source: Into Mind

 

How to build the perfect wardrobe: 10 basic principles @Into Mind

Building a Grown-Up Wardrobe :: purging, planning, and the perfect shopping list @AJ Wears Clothes

Building a Basic Wardrobe @Living on the Chic

How to Build a Wardrobe + Basic Wardrobe Checklist @ Jo-Lynne Shane

Infographic decision tree for wardrobe editing @Modern Eve

How to build your best spring wardrobe yet @Into Mind

 

101 fashion tips via StyleCaster

Source: StyleCaster

 

101 Fashion Tips and Tricks Every Girl Should Know @StyleCaster

My favorite source for fashion on a budget: Twice

My other favorite source for my fashion capsule on a budget: ThredUp

Which Fashion App Is Right for You? @Brit + Co

How to Maintain your Wardrobe throughout the Year @Into Mind

Essential Work Wardrobe with Printable Shopping List @tixeertne

 

Capsule/Minimalist Wardrobe Tips & Printables

Capsule planner via Unfancy

Source: Unfancy

 

Free Capsule Wardrobe Planner Tool @Unfancy

Project 333 Start Guide @Life Your Way

5 Things that do not Belong in Your Capsule Wardrobe @The Project 333

All Seasons Capsule Wardrobe Plan @The Lovely Laura Life

The 40 Hanger Closet- minimize your wardrobe for maximum style @Living Well Spending Less

 

Capsule guide via Inside Out Style

Source: Inside Out Style

 

How to create a wardrobe capsule: 12 garments = 72 outfits + printable guide @Inside Out Style

Rule of Three: add variety with this trick @Unfancy

The Bare Minimum 30 Piece Wardrobe @The Everyday Minimalist

Capsule Wardrobe Checklist @The Fitenessista

A 30-piece wardrobe with sample wardrobe pics, tips, and free printable shopping list @House for Five

 

Travel & Packing Tips & Printables

Travel fashion planner via Travel Fashion Girl

Source: Travel Fashion Girl

 

How to Plan your Travel Outfits: 5 Style Tools Show You How @Travel Fashion Girl

Packing Checklist and Outfit Planner @Pretty & Fresh

How to Plan a Travel Capsule Wardrobe for Vacation @Lady Light Travel

 

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

Tuesday, March 10th, 2015

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

Spring is knocking on our door in Indiana, I just know it, and today I’m sharing my 2015 Spring Fashion Capsule Wardrobe with you. I pushed this capsule out a few weeks after having a false start with my Winter wardrobe and then feeling that March would be better timing with a Spring wardrobe switch. I wore the last capsule almost four months and I was still finding new ways to wear things, even up until the final week. It is amazing what you can do when you are forced to really think about how to make the most of the items in your closet.

 I am really excited to share this new capsule wardrobe with you and am really proud that 90% of this wardrobe was purchased secondhand through Twice & Thredup. The rest of the items were smart investment piece purchases from our site sponsor Flourish Boutique and a t-shirt update from Old NavyMy big investment with this capsule was having a few pieces altered to fit me better. Jeans were shortened, waistlines were taken in, hems raised, and shoulders were adjusted on items that needed it.  I am really thrilled with how these items fit me and I know it will add to my happiness and longevity of the pieces I selected.

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

What is a Fashion Capsule & Why Should You Do One?

A capsule wardrobe is a collection of clothing which is designed using only interchangeable items, in order to maximize the number of outfits which can be created. The aim is to have an outfit suitable for any occasion without owning excessive items of clothing. This is usually achieved by buying what are considered to be “key” or “staple” items in coordinating colours.

The reason I think capsule wardrobes are worth exploring is that you realize when you have LESS in your closet you can do MORE with what you have. My closet used to be bursting at the seams with clothes and, what I like to call, one-trick-pony apparel. I felt put together after tearing up my room and trying to build outfits in the process, but it took me so long to get ready in the mornings and I never felt like I had a truly seamless style. Narrowing my wardrobe down to 33 items as outlined in Project 333 was just what I needed to make mornings less stressful and finding a real rhythm to getting dressed for the day. It’s been a beautiful shift in my life and I don’t think I could ever go back to the old ways of bursting closets and pointless purchases.

I tend to be a pretty colorful person so you will find color mixed in with basics in my wardrobe. Monochromatic isn’t my thing, but can be yours if you are trying to simplify your wardrobe. Many people begin their capsule experience very monochromatic and then find they are comfortable branching out into color after figuring out how to make everything work together.

Why My Capsule Shouldn’t Be YOUR Capsule

I show you my capsule mainly as some sort of accountability, but not necessarily for you to copy it. My style is probably not your style and that is okay. Your capsule can look nothing like my capsule.  Your body shape could be different from mine and none of these cuts of clothing or ideas will work for you.  When creating your capsule, create it around what you feel most confident in. I suggest peeking in your closet and selecting what makes you feel beautiful and start your planning around those pieces. That’s been the best place to start for me.

Why This Capsule Will Be a Challenge

Weather changes are always a challenge in the Midwest. Today the high is 41 degrees which feels like summer after the negative temperatures, but I know the weather is just going to get warmer. I have weaved in sweaters in preparation and items that will transition well between the seasons. I will be attending my first conference in my capsule wardrobe and….we are going to ITALY in May, all in this wardrobe.  It is a lot to think about, but I love that Project 333 allows me switch out an item each month so as the months progress I picture some of these trousers turning into shorts and sweaters into tank tops. I’m hoping I am prepared for all of this with these pieces.

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

I am planning to show you how I am wearing these items on here as well as through my Instagram account so you can see how I am putting my outfits together with these pieces. Here is an example of what I will be doing in IG each week. I’m no stylist though, this is just how I am dressing throughout the week with my edited closet! I was modeling them, but THE STRESS.  I just don’t have time to do that, but I am happy to piece together a template on my floor for you! Ha!

Do You Count Accessories As Your 33 Items?

One question I get asked is if I count accessories and shoes as my items. I do not, but feel free to do that if you like. For me a scarf, belt, or great jewelry really do add to the enjoyment and experience of my wardrobe. I am, however, more selective about the accessories I am choosing and really making sure that they are worth the space in my drawers and the money that is spent.

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

This project was inspired by Project 333 & the Unfancy fashion capsule challenge, but I am making a few of my own rules for my own personal challenge.

33 Piece Wardrobe- The wardrobe can have 33 pieces  in it. This wardrobe does not include pajamas, workout gear, undergarments, or camisoles (something that is a necessity for me).  The capsule is made from items I already own, some purchased to be workhorses in my wardrobe (since I fail in this department greatly), and purchased second hand at Goodwill or through Twice. All of the items I am not wearing and still love are being tucked in storage for the next fashion capsule.  I have created a Fashion Capsule Pinterest Board to help inspire me with the pieces I am using.

Choose 3 More for Rotating- You may choose three additional items and put them aside in your closet. You may rotate these items in during the next three months, but three other items have to be rotated out. Consider donating those items.

No Shoe Shopping- I am not including my shoes for this challenge, but I am challenging myself to not buy any more shoes and use what I already have.

One Steal Per Month- Things and events come up and I am allowing myself one steal per month from items that I already own. I may find I don’t need this, but I think it might help with the shopping bug.

No Shopping For Clothing- I will wear the clothes I have selected and not shop for three months and only shop two weeks prior to the next capsule for items for the next season if needed. This is going to require a lot of discipline for me and I am planning to unsubscribe to shopping newsletters and avoid the shops as much as possible.

This month’s Project 333 Wardrobe is listed below. The ones with an asterisk are carrying over from my last capsule. To me, these are the best pieces to buy since they are making a reappearance!

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

1. Kelly Green Cardigan (Gap)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

* 2. Not Afraid of the Dark Denim Jacket (Flourish Boutique)

* 3. Utility Vest With Faux Leather Details  (Groopdealz)

4. Navy & White Striped Blazer (J. Crew)-  Purchased secondhand from Twice

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

 

*5. Old Navy Vintage V-Neck T-Shirt in Gray- (Old Navy)

*6. Old Navy Vintage V-Neck T-Shirt in White- (Old Navy)

7. Old Navy Vintage V-Neck T-Shirt in Dark Gray- (Old Navy)

8. Polka-Dotted Sleeveless Silk Blouse (J. Crew)-  Purchased secondhand from Twice

9. Striped Navy & Cream T-shirt (J. Crew)- Purchased secondhand from Thredup

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

* 10.  Scarlet Swing Skirt (Anthropologie)

11. Palm Tree Skirt (Anthropologie)-  Purchased secondhand from Twice

* 12. Black A-Line Skirt (Gap)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

* 13. Black Pleated Maxi Skirt (Flourish Boutique)

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

14. Black Shirt Dress (White House Black Market)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

15. Chambray Shirt Dress (Anthropologie)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

16. Navy Jersey Tunic (J. Crew)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

17. Black & White Patterned Tunic (White House Black Market)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

18. Out of the Woods Floral Tunic- Flourish Boutique

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

19. Denim Jean Shirt (Express)- Purchased secondhand from Thredup

20. Black & White Boat Neck Striped Shirt (Banana Republic)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

*21. Blue Striped Top (White House Black Market)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

22. Black & White Sweater (White House Black Market)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

23. Navy Open Knit Sweater (White House Black Market)- – Purchased secondhand from Twice

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

24. White Long-Sleeve T-Shirt (Ann Taylor Loft)-  Purchased secondhand from Twice

* 25. Mossimo Short Sleeve Coral Shirt (Target)

26. Comfy in Crochet- Flourish Boutique

27. Western Adventure Tunic- Flourish Boutique

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

28. Black A-Line Dress (J. Crew)- Purchased secondhand from Thredup

29. Red Halter A-Line Dress (Banana Republic)- Purchased secondhand from Twice

30. Gray Striped Green Dress (Target)

Spring 2015 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project from MomAdvice.com

* 31. Matilda Jane Willow Tree Rider Pants (purchase from Amanda Petit, Matilda Jane Independent Trunk Keeper)

*32.  Dark Wash Skinny 7 Jeans-  Flourish Boutique

33. Black Skinny Pants (Ann Taylor Loft)

Coupons That Might Help If You Are Making a Capsule Too

Current Coupons for Old Navy (I am a big fan of their jeans and basic t-shirts)

Current Coupons for Target (their wardrobe is on the smart minimalist side this season- yay!)

Current Coupons for Gap (blazers, chambray shirts, collared shirts, jeans- oh my!)

Get $10 for your first Twice purchase (this is my favorite online consignment resource)

Use web code WEB25 for 25% off your purchase at Flourish Boutique (this is our site sponsor and where I get the majority of my clothing). You can also catch a sale daily on the Flourish Boutique Facebook Page)

Stitch Fix can be a fun resource for shopping for smart basic wardrobe pieces if a stylist might benefit you!

Don’t forget to clean out your closet! Here is a list of resources to help you make money while organizing this corner! Here are some tips for creating the perfect capsule wardrobe and feel free to browse my fall & winter capsule selections while you are gathering ideas for your own capsule! Follow me on IG for fresh outfit ideas each week! xo

 

*this post may contain affiliate links- I only recommend what I love though.

 

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m challenge: What’s in Your Closet? 6 Wardrobe Essentials

Monday, March 9th, 2015

As part of our March m challenge: Focus on Fashion, I’ve asked a number of fabulous fashion bloggers to share their wisdom with us, and I’m so happy that Jo-Lynne Shane is letting us peek into her closet today, sharing with us the six most important wardrobe pieces every woman should have in her closet! We have been friends for many years and I have always appreciated her smart sense of style that she is so generous to share with us all. I hope you enjoy peeking at her closet today! xo

Six Wardrobe Essentials

As a professional blogger and mom of three, I spend most of my days working from home and running the kids around, but I also attend enough events that I need to have a complete wardrobe so I’m not frantically shopping when I get a last minute opportunity. The trick is to find a few key pieces that you love. Then you can work out from there. Here are 6 pieces every mom needs in her closet.

1. Great Fitting Jeans

I don’t think a modern woman should be without a pair of good fitting jeans. This is an item for which I recommend making in investment if it is at all in your budget. Even if you’re on a tight budget, if you’re patient you can find great designer jeans at off-price stores such as Marshalls and T.J. Maxx or even at your local consignment store. A great pair of jeans is appropriate for {almost} any occasion. You can dress them up or down. I wrote a post on How To Find the Perfect Jeans if this is something that challenges you. If you can only have one pair, go for a dark wash in a straight leg style. That is the most versatile and the most universally flattering. I also feel that having a pair of skinny jeans that you can tuck into boots is essential, but that depends on your shoe wardrobe and the climate where you live.

2. & 3. Layering Tees and Tanks

It is essential to have a few basic tees and tanks to layer under cardigans, denim jackets, or blazers. You can also wear them under a pullover sweater that is a bit too short to add interest and also to help balance out your proportions.

4. Denim Jacket or ​Structured ​Blazer

Depending on your lifestyle, a denim jacket or fitted blazer is a great piece to have. (I like to have both.) You can throw it on over a dress, or layer it over a t-shirt and wear it with jeans or pants.

​5. Versatile Dress

It may be a LBD (little black dress) or something in a pretty print, but most women need at least one go-to dress. Again, something that can be dressed up or down depending on occasion is ideal. You can change up your look with accessories and make several outfits out of one basic dress.

6. Nude Pumps

You can wear nude pumps with jeans, pants, or dresses. Every woman should have a pair. They go with everything. Of course you will need other shoes in your wardrobe, but this is one pair that every woman should own.

 

What would you add to this list?

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Spring Trends: Bring Gray Into Your Wardrobe

Thursday, March 5th, 2015

Note: As part of our March m challenge: Focus on Fashion, I’ve asked a number of fabulous fashion bloggers to share their wisdom with us, and I’m so happy that Nicole Feliciano of MomTrends.com agreed to come on board to share a spring trend with us, all about incorporating gray into our wardrobes!  Nicole is one of the savviest and most fashionable ladies I know. I can’t wait to show you some of her ideas today! 

Spring Gray Trend_Nicole Feliciano

Gray might not be the color you think of for spring, but I’m smitten. Why? It’s a subtle way to lighten up from the black, charcoal and navy hues of winter. For spring, I’m craving a soft dove gray–a kinder gentler gray that works with many complexions and lots of stuff you already own.

For this outfit, I paired my favorite boyfriend jeans with a few new treats.  The boyfriends jean trend isn’t going anywhere–we all love them too much. For spring, I’ll be wearing this old pair from LOFT with lots of spring fashion looks on top. What I’m basing this look off of something I saw in an ASOS ad. I’ve been looking to add a few gray things to my closet and here’s what I came up with–sneaks, a sweater and a bag.
The bag was the first find was this doctor bag from from Nat & Matt. It’s big enough to get all my mom-gear tucked inside without looking like luggage.
The fisherman sweater is a smart style move. It works with my spring looks AND it can still work with my winter layers. Sadly, I think there are more days ahead where I’ll need a coat and sweater. At least I’ll have a few cute new layers.
Nicole Feliciano_Gray for Spring

And finally the shoes. Oh, how I love my shoes. Sneakers used to not qualify as serious fashion in my book, but now, sneakers are the new high heel. Not only are they fabulous to look at, the Ash python sneakers are perfect for my mom-on-the-go life where I walk miles and miles around the city.

 

For more mom-friendly fashion trends from Nicole, be sure to visit Momtrends.com and follow on Instagram @momtrends

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How to Make a Blanket Scarf

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

I am madly in love with blanket scarves. My obsession started as all good obsessions do. It began on Pinterest. All of these fabulously fashionable women were rocking these gorgeous scarves, but they were out of my price range or lacked the fullness & beauty that was captured online. I decided I wanted to make some for my minimalist wardrobe because it would add so much. Did you know you can make a blanket scarf with no sewing skills required?

Let’s begin by taking a peek at the coveted $44 Zara scarf (that sells out in minutes, not kidding).  I want to zoom on in it so we can take a closer look.

Zara Blanket Scarf

Source: Style for the Seasons

The thing I want you to see is that the edges are frayed on their version too. Guess what? You can achieve that with a little flannel and pulling. The best part is that this version will cost you quite a bit less than $44. I am going to make a big stack of them to show you and then I am going to show you some fun ways to tie them.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

The first thing you will need to do is shop for your fabric which is so much fun. I went to a few shops to check out fabric and ended up finding it at Jo-Ann Fabrics.  Head over here (a great coupon affiliate of mine!) and check to see if flannel fabrics are on sale. If not, that same link will provide you a 40% off coupon. You will DEFINITELY want to use this because it makes these scarves budget-friendly. Don’t forget your coupons.

Head over the Fashion Flannel…at least that’s what they call it in Mishawaka (oh-la-la!). Select your favorite patterns,tell them the amount you need, have them tell you they don’t have that much on a bolt, go grab another one, try again… Be annoyed. Decide to do two sizes because you want you what you want, that’s why you brought it up there. Got it?

I am going to show you what a 2 yard scarf looks like and then I am going to show you what a 2.5 yard scarf looks like below. I love them both for different reasons and what you can do with them. The price (with no sales or coupons) is $8.99 per yard. That’s why it is great to see the two version (for cost-savings) and also really great to bring a coupon to save a bit on the fabric.

I wouldn’t recommend anything more than that or your scarf will choke you and you will die from scarf blanket suffocation. It will be all over the headlines. They will be laughing at you in those ridiculous segments on the radio where they try to shock you at the stupidity of Americans.  Your family will miss you. It would all be very tragic.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Make a Blanket Scarf

1. Purchase 2-2.5 yards of flannel fabric (the flannel printing is on both sides).

2. Using the patterned flannel edge as a guide, trim the edges of each side of your scarf.

3. Grab the loose threads on the side and pull them down gently, fraying the edges of the scarf. Keep doing this until there are no loose threads and you have a beautifully frayed edge. Repeat on each side of the scarf. DONE!

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

This is what TWO YARDS of fabric looks like. You can see that it has a lot of fullness, but is not as long or as much to tie or knot around. Do you want to see how to tie it to look like this? Okay then.

How to Tie a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Tie Your Two Yard Blanket Scarf

1. Fold the scarf in half, lining the edges up evenly.

2. Make sure one end is shorter than the other and tuck it up over your shoulder.

3. Loop around once with the long end (or possibly twice depending on your neck size!).

4. Fluff and puff. Fluff and puff.

how-to-make-a-blanket-scarf-9

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

Here is the same size, just not puffed up so much. Seriously, cute stuff!

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

How to Tie Your 2.5 Yard Blanket Scarf

No need to reinvent the wheel…I just headed online to figure out a couple of fun ways to tie these longer blanket scarves. I tried this braided technique on Classy Sassy and really loved it. It is a little more complex than the one above, but it adds a beautiful detail to the styling.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

This half-tied technique couldn’t be easier and was a cinch to pull together and added just the right amount of fullness to the neckline.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

Here are a few other blanket scarf techniques I am looking forward to trying!

This one is similar to the half-tied technique, but no tying, just tucking. I can do that!

This chunky scarf technique would work really well with a 2-yard scarf so you could let the ends hang.

The 2.5-yard one would look great as a poncho or even pulled together with a belt.

This poncho style leaves the scarf folded making a smaller poncho version.

How to Make a Blanket Scarf from MomAdvice.com

I’m Petite & Want to Make a Smaller Version- What Can I Do?

I’m pretty petite, but I know big scarves aren’t for everyone!  Shave 6-7 inches off the width on a 2 yard version to make a more petite version of this scarf with a little less bulk or experiment with your own sizing by creating your own custom version. Just cut, try on, adjust. There are no wrong or right lengths- it is what fits YOU or your recipient best!

I hope you have a blast making these quick scarves for yourself or for holiday gift-giving. Check out this list of 54 handmade gifts you can make for the holiday season to inspire you even more! Happy crafting!

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Fun New Ways to Dress Up Boots For Fall

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

Fun New Ways to Dress Up Boots For Fall

As soon as the temperatures start dipping, I know it is almost my favorite footwear season… boot season, friends!  There is nothing cozier than a warm pair of boots and this season, embellished boots and boot toppers are all the rage for making your boots feel fresh again. Whether you score your boots at Goodwill or if you find the perfect pair elsewhere, I have some fun and creative ideas for making a tired pair of boots feel like new again with these 7 tutorials for fun ways to dress up your boots.

Head on over to the Goodwill Tips blog to gather some fun new ways to dress up your boots!

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Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

Winter-2014-Fashion-Capsule-Wardrobe

Thank you guys for indulging me so much in my fashion capsule project this year. Today I wanted to reveal my Winter fashion capsule wardrobe that I will be wearing the next three months and hopefully inspire you to create a capsule wardrobe of your own. This capsule launches on November 22nd for me, but I wanted to share it with you early in hopes that some of these items might inspire you. As always, follow me on Instagram and check our It’s the 3 Little Things to see the outfits I create with these items.

After doing a little research this time around and feeling like even though I had minimized my wardrobe A LOT, I still felt like I could minimize a bit more. Here are last month’s rules I created if that works better for you. In all honesty, this is about minimizing so follow rules that fit well with you and consider stages like I am doing. This time I am doing a modified Project 333 project similar to what I did last month. Here are the rules I am following this month.

A Modified Project 333

What Is a Capsule Wardrobe?

A capsule wardrobe is a collection of clothing which is designed using only interchangeable items, in order to maximise the number of outfits which can be created. The aim is to have an outfit suitable for any occasion without owning excessive items of clothing. This is usually achieved by buying what are considered to be “key” or “staple” items in coordinating colours.

This project was inspired by Project 333 & the Unfancy fashion capsule challenge, but I am making a few of my own rules for my own personal challenge.

33 Piece Wardrobe- The wardrobe can have 33 pieces  in it. This wardrobe does not include pajamas, workout gear, undergarments, or camisoles (something that is a necessity for me).  The capsule is made from items I already own, some purchased to be workhorses in my wardrobe (since I fail in this department greatly), and purchased second hand at Goodwill or through Twice. All of the items I am not wearing and still love are being tucked in storage for the next fashion capsule.  I have created a Fashion Capsule Pinterest Board to help inspire me with the pieces I am using.

Choose 3 More for Rotating- You may choose three additional items and put them aside in your closet. You may rotate these items in during the next three months, but three other items have to rotated out. Consider donating those items.

No Shoe Shopping- I am not including my shoes for this challenge, but I am challenging myself to not buy any more shoes and use what I already have.

One Steal Per Month- Things and events come up and I am allowing myself one steal per month from items that I already own. I may find I don’t need this, but I think it might help with the shopping bug.

No Shopping For Clothing- I will wear the clothes I have selected and not shop for three months and only shop two weeks prior to the next capsule for items for the next season if needed. This is going to require a lot of discipline for me and I am planning to unsubscribe to shopping newsletters and avoid the shops as much as possible.

This month’s Project 333 Wardrobe is listed below. The ones with TWO asterisks are carrying over from my last capsule. To me, these are the best pieces to buy since they are making a reappearance! The ones with a single asterisk are still in route to my house. I will photograph them when they arrive!

Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

1.  J. Crew Emerald Green Blouse (owned- second-hand purchase)

2.  Seamless Perfection Long Sleeve Tunic in Chocolate (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

** 3.  Seamless Perfection Long Sleeve Tunic Dress in Black (owned- Flourish Boutique)

4.  Seamless Perfection Long Sleeve Tunic in Gray (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

** 5.  H&M Black & White Striped Top (owned- Goodwill)

6. White Mossimo Thermal T-Shirt (purchased- Target)

7.  Flannel Shirt (purchased- Pitaya)

8.  Amelia Jacket (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

** 9. Chambray Shirt (owned- Flourish Boutique)

Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

10. J. Crew Red Plaid Tunic  (purchased second-hand on Twice)

11. Brooklyn T-Shirt (purchased Urban Outfitters)

12. Camel Colored Cowl Tunic Top Sweatshirt (purchased Target)

13. Hunter Green Floral & Lace Hoodie (purchased- Marshall’s)

14. Rust Colored Bird Print Shirt (owned- Flourish Boutique)

15. ya Gray Wool Sweater Vest (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

16. Anthropologie Felted Sweater Coat (owned second-hand from Clothes Mentor)

17. Gray Faux Fur Vest (purchased- Target)

Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

** 18. Old Navy Plaid Flannel Shirt (owned- Old Navy)

19. Gap Wool Blazer (owned- Gap)

20. Papillion Yellow Mustard Circle Dress (owned- Flourish Boutique)

21. Anthropologie Yellow Mustard Sweater (purchased second-hand on Twice)

22. Anthropologie Scarlet Swing Skirt (my splurge- Anthropologie)

23. Ruffles Have Ridges Top  (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

24. J. Crew Khaki A-Line Skirt (purchased second-hand on Twice)

25. White House Black Market Knit Black Dress  (purchased second-hand on Twice)

Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

** 26. The Essential Leggings in Black (owned- Flourish Boutique)

27. The Essentials Leggings in Brown  (purchased- Flourish Boutique)

28. Matilda Jane Willow Tree Rider Pants (purchase from Amanda Petit, Matilda Jane Independent Trunk Keeper)

29. Burgundy Knit Leggings (owned- Ann Taylor Loft)

** 30. Seven Skinny Jeans (owned- Flourish Boutique)

Winter 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe Project

** 31. Old Navy Vintage V-Neck T-Shirt in Gray- (Old Navy)

herringbone-vest

*Houndstooth Puffer Vest J. Crew Knockoff (purchased- Groopdealz)

*Not pictured yet! Red Puffer Vest (purchased- Groopdealz)

Coupons That Might Help If You Are Making a Capsule Too

Current Coupons for Old Navy (I am a big fan of their jeans and basic t-shirts)

Current Coupons for Target (their wardrobe is on the smart minimalist side this season- yay!)

Current Coupons for Gap (blazers, chambray shirts, collared shirts, jeans- oh my!)

Get $10 for your first Twice purchase (this is my favorite online consignment resource)

Use web code WEB25 for 25% off your purchase at Flourish Boutique (this is our site sponsor and where I get the majority of my clothing). You can also catch a sale daily on the Flourish Boutique Facebook Page)

Stitch Fix can be a fun resource for shopping for smart basic wardrobe pieces if a stylist might benefit you! Be sure to note in your file EXACTLY what you are looking for when scheduling your fix.

Again, I won’t be daily documenting, but you can find me on Instagram sharing ideas and I showcase three ideas every Friday for you to try. I promise though to fully commit to this and I know this will be very good for me this year.

UPDATES HERE:

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Really Works)

It’s the 3 Little Things (Three Outfits Posted EVERY WEEK in each entry- happy browsing!!)

Fall Fashion Capsule 2014

Would you like to do a challenge with me? Feel free to leave a comment below and let me know if you want to join in on the fun or if you are doing a similar challenge of your own!

*this post may contain affiliate links- I only recommend what I love though.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Since I have reached the halfway point in my first fashion capsule, I thought it would be a great time to check in with you and share what I have learned so far in my journey with my capsule wardrobe. If you haven’t been following along, you can view my Fall 2014 Fashion Capsule Wardrobe and read more about the approach I decided to use on my first capsule.  Honestly, I was so nervous even saying out loud what I had planned to do and  planning my fashion capsule wardrobe consumed my every thought for a good month before I decided to take that plunge. Add in the hurdle of three seasons in a single capsule in the Midwest, ranging in temperatures from the thirties to almost one hundred. I had no idea if I could even pull this off.

Here is what I want to tell you and I hope you will listen closely.

This project has changed my life and my habits.

The first couple of weeks I sat firmly in an identity crisis.  What was I going to do with all this free time now that I wasn’t shopping?  There were no impulse purchases to be made, no special date night outfits to purchase to surprise my husband, no picking up a few things for myself before a business trip. I went to places with glorious shops and beautiful clothes and almost wanted to wear a blindfold through stores. I probably pouted.  It seemed like I was being subjected to people just waving their pretty outfits in my face and I couldn’t buy them.

It brought a level of awareness of my need to consume for no reason other than consumption. 

Whoa.

Feel free to read that line again. From the author of THE GOOD LIFE FOR LESS

The shame.

I have a habit of spending money unnecessarily and this is helping me be aware of that. I had a closet overflowing and I will still buy. I have 37 of the most well-thought pieces and I still want to buy. This challenge has been eye-opening.

My next capsule begins on November 22nd (UPDATE: My Winter Capsule is HERE) and I would love to have you join in with me on this next one!  Since I feel like I have learned a lot in this one already, here is my advice to you if you are considering creating a fashion capsule of your own.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Invest in Foundation Garments

One thing I have  had trouble spending money on in the past is good foundation garments. What I have discovered in creating this capsule is that my most used pieces are the foundation pieces that I invested in to layer under my wardrobe pieces. I always relied upon inexpensive camisoles and cheap tank tops to set the foundation for my outfits which lead to constant tugging and pulling on straps, shifting straps to make things look nice,  bulk from added thickness from foundation pieces that didn’t fit properly under my clothing, and the pieces never covered my behind making it impossible to wear leggings confidently.  Three of my most used pieces were my Seamless Perfection Long Sleeve Tunic Dress in Black (purchased- Flourish Boutique and shown above),  a Long Sleeve Seamless Layering Piece in Gray  (owned- Flourish Boutique), and a Seamless Tank in Burgundy (owned- Flourish Boutique).  I swear this isn’t just a plug for the boutique, these were really the pieces that I relied upon the most to add warmth to summer items and to keep things modest.

It doesn’t matter where you get them, but really consider snagging seamless tanks, long sleeve tops, and even a layering piece like a seamless tunic dress to help you feel confident in your outfits and appearance. It has made me feel so much more confident to have these pieces in my capsule wardrobe.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Don’t Base Your Fashion Capsule Around Someone Else’s Style

The inspiration for this challenge came from Unfancy and I give her full credit for inspiring me to take the plunge into creating a fashion capsule. I adore her style and her outfits so much. I got a lot of inspiration for smart basics to put in my capsule wardrobe from her. That said, I am not her (isn’t that sad?!?!)  I am a mom  in her thirties of two kids, living in Indiana, who has a style that leans more towards retro than modern. If I based my capsule around her style, I would have felt a little like I was playing dress-up and probably a whole lot NOT like me.  You thought I had an identity crisis before.

My style is probably not your style and that is okay. Your capsule can look nothing like my capsule.  Your body shape could be different from mine and none of these cuts of clothing or ideas will work for you.  When creating your capsule, create it around what you feel most confident in. I suggest peeking in your closet and selecting what makes you feel beautiful and start your planning around those pieces. That’s the best place to start.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

It’s Okay to Add Color & Pattern To Your Capsule

When I told my friends & family that I was embarking on this crazy fashion capsule journey, they told me that they just couldn’t picture me in all black and without pattern. What the what? No way! I love color and I love patterns and textures. I would never shy away from the things that make me… well, ME.  There are certainly those black & white basics weaved in, but I would never be happy in only black and white.  Even when wearing these black and white items, I find ways to weave in color in scarves, necklaces, shoes, belts, and purses.  You can’t hide this loudness. It is impossible.

Again, this is all about making your capsule work best for YOU not anyone else. You don’t have to have a colorless wardrobe unless you want to.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Alterations Are a Worthy Investment

I am very petite and my clothing never really fits me right. Shoulders need to be moved up, waists taken in, buttons shifted, and hemlines raised.  Alterations can be pricy, but I promise that you will enjoy your capsule wardrobe so much more if they fit you well.  If clothes right off the hanger fit you perfectly, I really envy you.  If they don’t, consider investing once a week into having one item altered and wearing your wardrobe that does fit until it can come out of alterations. Almost all of my wardrobe is carrying over to my next capsule because it fits me well and because I invested in alterations to help me look my best.  It is one investment worth making and will pay off for future capsules.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Invest Wisely By Buying Consignment Clothing

I am a bit of a brand snob, but didn’t want to spend a ton of money on my fashion capsule. I admit, that first one (unless you are a wise investor in basics), can be a little draining on the budget. After buying my basics, I couldn’t necessarily run over to J. Crew to pick up a few things or grab a beautiful sweater or dress from Anthropologie. I was already over budget.  I can, however, seek those items out second hand whether it is a local thrift store or through my favorite second hand online retailer  Twice. The items I selected were practically brand new and I am still getting the longevity out of them that I had hoped for.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

 

Read Those Care Tags & Exercise Caution When Caring For Them

The hardest lesson I have learned is to be more aware of care labels. Since I am living in these key pieces for three months, I should have bought only things that could be washed or would require a little line drying.

The first week of beginning my capsule, I went to a bridal shower, hopped in the car with my sister-in-law, jetted to Starbucks, spilled Starbucks all over my skirt (a signature piece, I might add!), tried to spot clean it, ended up washing it on delicate, took the skirt out and it was…

thisbig

Yup, dry clean only. I spent all day fluffing and separating the fabric and shaping it back into its former glory. I wore it to church the next day and felt like a slip was dragging behind me. I looked and sure enough the whole underlayer was hanging out an inch. I called my mother-in-law and declared a fashion emergency and she GRACIOUSLY let me bring my tiny skirt over to her house and hemmed it for me.

First lesson learned: check care label information before making minimalist wardrobe purchases.

The second lesson learned is that taking time to REALLY take care of your pieces will help with the longevity of those items. I have been line-drying almost everything and it still looks like new, whether it was from Target or from Anthropologie. If you REALLY take care of your stuff, you can help keep it looking good for future capsules!!

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Curb the Boredom With Styling

I get bored easily and perhaps it is this boredom that creates that desire in me to buy, buy, buy. I started my Fashion Capsule Pinterest board to help me rethink the items I already have and new ways that I can wear them. If you see a big surge in posts, I am hitting a boredom phase and need to try something new. I have learned new ways to roll my sleeves, new ideas for styling some of my basic key pieces, and discovered new ways to twist scarves.

As soon as that boredom hits, chase it away with a new style.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Stealing Helps

The cushion I had in my capsule is that I am allowed one steal from my existing wardrobe. Since I apparently am a shopaholic, I look forward to my steal so much each month. I have been saving it for the end of the month so that I have something to really look forward to. It’s nice to know that just when I am feeling a little tired of my pieces, I can raid my closet!

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

Your Wardrobe Will Get Considerably Lighter

Did I mention I have rid myself of 37 items of clothing in honor of this new challenge? AND IT WAS EASY TO DO. When you buy things that make sense together, that fit well, that make you feel confident…you realize the heavy load of crap that is in your closet that just don’t do those things for you. I filled a bag this week of 37 pieces I do not need and I know there will be more. Since doing this, I feel more confident than ever. Things make sense and this wardrobe works for me. Goodbye stuff that does not make me look and feel good. I don’t need you anymore.

Creating the Perfect Fashion Capsule Wardrobe (That Will REALLY Work!)

I Still Haven’t Wore Everything

I am halfway into my capsule and I still have not wore everything in it. That is the truth. You still will fall into routines and habits with the comfy pieces and the things you love the most. I still have three items I have not worn and many that have only been worn once or twice. Like I said, who needs to shop with so much already at my disposal?

Fashion Capsule Challenge

Would you like to do a Fashion Capsule challenge with me? I will be revealing the next wardrobe very soon to inspire you for the Fall months. I post outfits weekly in my It’s the 3 Little Things and on Instagram. Feel free to leave a comment below and let me know if you want to join in on the fun or if you are doing a similar challenge of your own!

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