Saturday, November 30, 2013

Take One Recap


Doing the Take One, Pass It On challenge was really fun for me (shout out to Sarah for coming up with the idea!).  I apparently like having some guidance in what I should wear each day.  Other than day one, I really like all of these outfits, and didn't feel like I was limited by the challenge at all.  It helped me be more creative, which is a good thing!

Anyway, I thought it'd be interesting to see what types of items were passed along.  No big surprise here - the cardigans win with 4 passes.  Coming in second with 3 each are jeans, tops, and jackets(including my blazer).  I was surprised that I only passed on one skirt.  And the others were pretty much accessories (shoes, scarf, necklace, belt).   I feel good that I only did 5 accessory passes.  Those seem easier than main clothing items, so I'm glad I didn't take the easy route too often! 

Here's to December, when I have to dress myself without any rules other than weather-requirements. 

November Shopping

November - Outlets

November's shopping story is a two-parter.  Part one involves a trip to the outlet mall that just opened near me.  I decided to let myself go overboard because I had $200 of birthday money that I added in to my clothing budget.  Normally, I still follow my cheap shopping rules with gift cards or gift money, but I decided that the whole point of gifts is that they are for things I wouldn't normally get to buy, so here's the breakdown of my birthday/outlet shopping: 

Kate Spade bow earrings: $14 (originally $48)
F21 Love bracelet: $2 - mine is a script font, but isn't online
*F21 Gold chain necklace: $11 (worn here)

*Gap midrise Skinny Jeans (similar option): $30  (originally $60) (worn here)

*J.Crew Factory Camel Cardigan (similar option): $24  (originally $80) (worn here)
*J.Crew Factory Polka dot popover: $31 (originally $65) (worn here)
J.Crew Factory printed button-up shirt: $16 (originally $65)
*J.Crew Factory Sylvia wedges black: $59 (originally $120) - I had to re-order a different size, so these may go back if they don't fit

OUTLET TOTAL: $187 (originally $649)

So, I guess I still followed my cheap shopping, because I paid about 30% of original prices, but I just got more things than I normally would have.  Happy Birthday to me!  

November - black friday

Part two is Black Friday.  I wasn't going to go shopping, but then I just popped out for a little bit yesterday evening.  There were a couple things at Old Navy that I wanted to check out, and I wanted to stop in DSW to see if they had a sale on the brown version of my black boots.  Well, Old Navy had some really good deals on some things I'd been wanting.  And then DSW didn't have a deal, but I went ahead and got the boots, because I love the black ones, and I really need a replacement pair of cognac boots for this winter, and I've tried on a lot of other options that are NOT comfortable.  Here's the breakdown: 

*Old Navy red cardigan:  $10 (originally $25)
*Old Navy cobalt skirt:  $10 (originally $20)
Old Navy cobalt pumps:  $12 (originally $30)
*Old Navy gray/silver flats:  $12 (originally $27)
Old Navy tights (3 pair - brown, gray, tan): $4 each (originally $10 each)

*Steve Madden Kambyy Boots: $95 (originally $115)

BLACK FRIDAY TOTAL:  $151 (originally $247)

November TOTAL:  $338 (originally $896)
Birthday Money: $200
Earned Selling Consignment: $41.12
Total out of clothing budget: $96.88

While I did spend a lot more than I'm used to spending, once I add in my birthday money and consignment earnings, I was actually just under budget for the month. And I'm still significantly under budget for the year. 

Another interesting/funny thing to note is that this is the 3rd month in a row where I've gotten 4 new pairs of shoes.  I hadn't bought new shoes in awhile, so I think it was time to upgrade some of my basics, and get some more modern "fun" options.  I think I've gotten rid of more than I've bought, so I still have space on the shoe shelf.  And I probably shouldn't buy shoes for awhile!  Plus, I need to make a Christmas list and then not buy anything until after gifts are exchanged! 

How'd you do this month?  Did you get caught up in the Black Friday sales?  Go link up with Fran and the other Budgeting Bloggers

* - items from my wardrobe wishlist

Friday, November 29, 2013

Turkey Hangover


Well, I don't know about you, but I ate entirely too much turkey yesterday.  Seriously though, I hope you all had a great day celebrating Thanksgiving.  We had a fabulous meal, and then a lazy afternoon watching football (well, I may have been reading a book), and then played games in the evening.  My ridiculous winning streak at Settlers of Catan continues, much to the dismay of my competitors!

I'm still not sure if I'm going to venture out to do any shopping today.  I'm tempted to swing by the mall next to my house, but I know it will be packed.  Maybe later in the day?  Or maybe not.  There are just a few things I have my eye on and would like to check out.

It's also the last day of the Take One, Pass It On challenge.  I'll do a little recap of the month for tomorrow.  Oh, and it's almost December, so I probably need to write up a budget post and a goals review.  Time is flying!

Blazer & Jeans: Gap
Top: J.Crew Factory
Shoes: Old Navy

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope everyone is having a wonderful day celebrating with family and friends.  I'll keep it short and sweet today, and then I'll be back tomorrow with the last day of Take One, Pass It On.  

Cardigan: J.Crew Factory
Scarf: H&M
Tee: Old Navy
Jeans: Gap
Boots: Steve Madden

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Weather Talk

These pictures are from last Tuesday, when the high was 62.  The highs this week are mostly in the 30s.  Is there anything more interesting than a fashion blogger talking about the weather? 

Anyway, I thought I should wear this dress again before the winter months.  Most of my summer dresses are easy to transition to winter, but I'm not sure what color of tights/boots would work with this one.  Any thoughts? 

These shoes were pretty popular the first time I wore them on the blog, so I was happy to pass them on.   I saw them at Old Navy a few months ago, and almost bought them, but then talked myself out of it.  Then I put them on my birthday list, but didn't get them.  So then I just bought them for myself!  I really like them! 

Cardigan: J.Crew Factory
Dress: Banana Republic
Necklace: Forever 21
Shoes: Old Navy

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Doctor Who


The problem with binge-watching television shows is that eventually you catch up, and then you have to be patient.  John and I finally jumped on the Doctor Who bandwagon several months ago, and pretty quickly worked our way from 2005 to current.  And now I have to wait until the Christmas special comes out and then I have to wait until fall of 2014.  This is ridiculous.  (hashtag: firstworldproblems)

Any other Doctor Who fans out there in style-blog-land?  Either way, what other TV shows would you recommend to keep me busy while I'm waiting for new episodes of my favorite British shows?

Jacket: Relativity
Chambray: J.Crew Factory
Jeans: Gap
Shoes: Old Navy

Monday, November 25, 2013

Tights Season

Well, I had big dreams of avoiding tights until December, but I gave up without too much of a fight.  We had a cold spell last week and I didn't want to wear jeans every day, so I had to rummage through my tights to find a decent pair.  Apparently, I need to get restocked.  (get it? tight are stockings!)

Anyway, happy Monday and happy short work week!  My weekend was pretty good.  I went to see Elf the Musical on Friday evening with my MIL and SIL, which definitely got me in the mood for Christmas.

On Saturday, I went to see Catching Fire, which was fabulous.  Not so fabulous: the women sitting behind me.  They were the worst kind of movie-talkers.  (Warning, there's no real spoilers in these quotes, but you may want to avoid them if you don't already know what happens in the books.)  (And for the record, Gale and Peeta don't look at all alike, except for the fact that they are both white 20-something males.)  "Is that Peeta?"  "NO, it's Gale!"  "Wait, I thought he was dead?"  "No, why would you think that?"  "So, Peeta is dead?"  "No, I don't think so.  Maybe...  I'm not sure!"  UGH - STOP TALKING!

This is the last week of Take One, Pass It On.  My polka dot cardigan is making an appearance from Friday's post.  Make sure you check out Sarah and the other bloggers who are participating.

Cardigan: Old Navy
Chambray & Skirt: J.Crew factory
Shoes: Seychelles

Friday, November 22, 2013

All Mixed Up


I'm not sure what's going on, but I've been completely confused all week about what day it is.  I think it is partly because I had extra plans after work on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  Then Thursday and today, my department is doing off-site training, so I'm working, but it's not at the office, and it's completely different than my normal day (like, I have to wake up at a normal person time, instead of sleeping in late!)  I was thinking it would be better next week, but apparently Thanksgiving is happening.  Where did November go exactly?  I have no idea.

The Take One, Pass it On challenge is almost over - just one more week!  Then I can get back to participating in link ups on the appropriate days.  I missed Pinned It & Did It yesterday, so I'm making up for it with today's outfit.  Tamara from Ordinary Fashionista is one of my favorites, and I love this outfit of hers from way back in May.  Stripes + Dots + a dash of pink?  Sign me up!  (Plus, she's kind of an amazing seamstress.)

Happy Friday!

Skirt, Cardigan, Belt: Old Navy
Tee: Gap
Necklace: InPink
Shoes: Target

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Outlet Mall Confessions

Remember on Monday when I mentioned that I was going to the new outlet mall?  Let's just say I definitely spent all my birthday money!  A few random thoughts:
  • I've never been to a mall opening before.  Rumor has it that there were crazy crowds all weekend, but Monday afternoon/evening wasn't too bad.  
  • Some outlets are awesome (like J.Crew and Gap).  Some are not awesome.  There were a few that I was very excited about, but it seemed like they just had clothes from 10 years ago.  Not interested. 
  • Some outlets are still too expensive for me.  I'm hoping as time goes by that they will have clearance sections and then I can find things to buy (I'm looking at you, Banana Republic!)
  • J.Crew didn't have the Sylvia wedges in my size, but I tried on a different pair of heels and decided to order both the black and tan wedges online.  They had a deal for 40% off and then an additional 20% off plus free shipping, so I figure it will be easy enough to return them to the store if I don't like them.  
  • I saw at least 3 people wandering around the parking lot with no idea where they had parked.  
  • The restaurants out there need to open!  There was pretty much just Subway and Auntie Anne's pretzels open.  The gourmet grilled cheese places is going to be my new favorite.
  • I came down with a slight case of BUY ALL THE THINGS on this shopping trip.  I'm usually better at making wise choices, but when I got home and reviewed my purchases, I realized some things will need to go back.  For example, the denim jacket that didn't seem cropped at the store but now seems very cropped!  Probably because I tried it on with a tunic-length shirt at the store.  Rookie mistake!  And the fun patterned tights that got a run when I tried to put them on yesterday morning (not sure if I can even return these, but I will try!).  I also ended up with a perfect camel-colored boyfriend cardigan, but it's dry clean only.  I'm thinking I can hand wash or delicate cycle the merino wool.  Am I crazy to think that?  I won't dry clean a cardigan.  That's just crazy.  

TOPIO Item - blazer!  (well, and the boots, but I already officially passed them on once). 

Blazer: H&M
Sweater: Gap
Necklace: Bass
Skirt: Old Navy
Boots: Steve Madden

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


You might have noticed that my background is a little more interesting than usual.  That's because these were taken at the Nebraska Capitol building.  John had an engineering ceremony, so we stayed afterwards for the free tour.  It's kind of weird that I lived just a few blocks away for 3.5 years of college and never went inside this building!  

It's pretty cool, I guess.  The tour guide declared that this is the best of all the state capitol buildings, and asked if any of us had toured any of the other ones.  I was the only one, and then she asked me to verify that Nebraska was better.  I didn't think it would be an appropriate time to disagree, so I didn't really answer her.  For the record, I'm partial to Kansas, because it looks like a capitol building ought to look.  Some short internet research leads me to believe that Alaska and North Dakota are tied for least impressive capitol buildings.

Can you tell that I passed along my necklace?  It's pretty sneaky of me!

Necklace: Limited
Dress: Gibson & Latimer
Blazer: H&M
Boots: Steve Madden

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Literary Link-Up Day

Where my nerds at?  Oh, probably judging me for the atrocious grammar of that sentence!  Anyway, it's Literary Junkies time yet again.  Here are the questions and my answers for November:

What are you currently reading? Tell us about it!

I'm almost finished with Mr. Penumbra's 24-hour Bookstore.  It's a difficult book to describe, but so far, I love it.  It's just bizarre and fun and it glows in the dark - which really confused me the first night that it was on my bedside table.  

How many books have you read this year? Do you set reading goals for yourself?

I've read 43 books this year.  I try to read 50 each year, so I'm right on track.  I love to read, but I tend to forget if I don't make it a priority.  I found that setting a goal helps me make time for reading.  

What do you think are the best and worst book-to-movie/TV show adaptations?

Hmm, there are so many bad ones!  I'd have to say Silver Linings Playbook was the worst.  They just changed so many of the critical elements of the book.  I don't know what the best is, but I thought the Harry Potter movies were a pretty good adaptation of the books.  There were some things that I would have done differently, but I felt the movies stayed true to the intention of the books.  

What is the first line of your favorite book?

I have no idea.  First, I would have to pick a favorite book, and that's pretty tricky.  I have 29 books on my "favorites" shelf on Goodreads, so I couldn't narrow it down to one favorite.   

What's your favorite quote from a book

Again, I don't know.  So many books.  So many great quotes.  It's impossible to choose!

The Literary Junkies are chatting tonight about The Storyteller.  Next month, we are reading Safe Haven.  I have it checked out from the library, but haven't picked it up to read yet.  This will be my first Nicholas Sparks and I'm just not sure about it.  Romance is weird!  Give me books that glow in the dark instead!

I'm still passing things along.  Today it's my grandpa cardigan.

AND finally, since I don't have much flexibility to join in on Thursday, I'll be linking this navy leopard print dress up for Third Thursday Threads!    

Cardigan: Urban Outfitters
Dress: Gap
Belt: Chinese Laundry
Necklace: Limited
Boots: Wanted

Monday, November 18, 2013


I may have hinted on Friday that I'd be wearing these white jeans again.  The Take One, Pass It On challenge is an excellent excuse to repeat my favorites without feeling guilty!

The weekend was nice, but always too short.  On Saturday, I finished season 3 of Downton Abbey.  I had heard that the ending was heartbreaking, but wow.  The Brits sure know how to destroy hopes and dreams!  Now I need to figure out how to watch season 4! 

On a happier note, I'm venturing to the new outlet mall after work today, hoping that the crazy weekend crowds will be gone.  My friend Brooke (you may remember her from Halloween) and I made plans to check it out (which is good, because I probably would have gone on Saturday and never found a parking spot!).  I've been scoping out the J.Crew Factory website in preparation. I'm hoping to try on these shoes and buy them if they are as wonderful as they seem.  Expectations are high, so I will probably be disappointed!  (see what I did there?  Lowering my own expectations with pessimism is one of my top skills!)

Cardigan:Urban Outfitters
Shirt: J.Crew factory
Jeans: Limited
Shoes: Old navy

Friday, November 15, 2013

Leopard plus Sequins and a Link-up!

It's Leopard Link-Up Day, y'all!  I'm so excited that I'm typing in a southern accent!  Link up info is at the bottom of the post.

I saved my leopard print sequined tank top for the grand finale, because OBVIOUSLY!  The white jeans are a recent purchase from The Limited.  They've been on my wishlist for at least a year, but I'm happy that I waited, because these are perfect, and they were on end of summer clearance.  Limited is my new default jeans store.  I've been searching Pinterest for "white jeans in winter", so I can make sure to wear them as much as possible.

Week Two of Take One, Pass It On is complete!  I'm kind of excited that all 5 of my outfits have different locations.  

Cardigan: Old Navy
Top: Chaus
Jeans: Limited