July 1, 2014

White Dresses, Birkenstocks, and our New Fav Patio, In Riva (Local Love)

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A few weeks ago, we headed down to Kelly drive to go for a little family walk.  And were greeted by this sight: 

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Oh.  Oh.  It was the Manyunk Bike Race, which is, apparentely, a big deal.  There was music, and beer, and a kiddie carnival.  They had some sort of zip-line thing for kids that dare-devil Raines was ALL ABOUT.

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And guess who's behind Door #2?

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It's Pax!!  Pax typically hates this kind of stuff so I don't know WHAT ON EARTH possessed him to try this.  I was freaking out (and taking pics, naturally).

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Brave little puppy.  But he did it.  And when he was done?  There were a bunch of people watching and laughing and pointing – he looked so small, you know?  

Waving to his fans.

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This was my reaction:

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Dork.  I am a dork.

Raines proceeded to go 2394876 more times, and Pax went ONCE more and then was all "I done, Mom" and really…who can blame him?  You couldn't pay me to go on that thing.  Well.  You could, I suppose, but it would be for a lot of money

After all of that excitement Mama needed a drink, so we wandered into a parent-wonderland known as In-Riva's patio.

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I consider any joint with a patio to be kid-friendly.  But this place also had crazy-amazing pizza, great drink selection, and live music.

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Yup – it was as good as it looks.  In-Riva is now one of our fav weekend haunts.  They don't always have live music, but tiring the kids out with a walk along the river then stopping for pizza and drinks is one of the great joys in life.  You know?

As are white dresses in summer.  I like mine with birks.  I have to credit Garace Dore with planting this seed.   A year ago she was talking about white dresses and said, "With Birks?  I do not think I am ready" and I thought "I SO AM" and now – just this past week!! – even Who What Wear is on board.  So there you go.  I'm not crazy.  (Almost.  I have a shirt that says almost not crazy and I think that's about right.) 

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wearing

dress: Milly…similar white cotton eyelet shift dress by Theory (on sale!)

Shoes: Naot Tahoe (like Birks, but more narrow)

Bag: Kate Spade (similar bag)

Sunnies: Ray-Bans

On Pax: Afrika American Apperal leggings, One Jackson shirt from Thred Up, Vans, Strider Balance Bike (aka the best money we've ever spent on anything, ever.)

On Raines: Tribe is Alive Be Brave tee, Tea Collection Knit Playwear Pants, Saltwater sandals

 

I also put together a little white dress + birkenstock shopping list, if you're interested.

xo,

S

June 10, 2014

Baseball Hat, Meet Summer Dress

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Like so many outfits, this one was born out of desperation.  My hair is growing back curly as F-CK, which also happens to be my first thought when looking at this frizzball in the mirror.  In the swamplands of Philly where we currently reside (seriously what is up with the humidity lately), I finally just put a hat on the whole thing and called it a day.

I kinda like it paired with a dress for a little something unexpected, right?  

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Pax is going through this phase where he keeps forcing my mouth open, then shoving his dirty little mitts inside.   So. Gross. SOGROSS!  I almost like it better when he plunges his hand down my shirt.

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 wearing:

hatJ.Crew Adore Hat

dress:  SheInside striped dress (Ummm…seriously on sale for $11.  And crazy-perfect for post-partum and nursing.)

shoesSaltwater sandals

lipsTarte Lipsurgence Lip Tint in Fiery

accessories:  Tiffany necklace, Fearless necklace, Ray-bans

 

 

 

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After seeing my striking resemblance to Magnum PI, I went in and had Shannon trim the almost-mullet just a shmidge.

Magnum

 

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wearing:

 

hat: J.Crew Adore Hat

dress:  old – bought when I was still nursing…but try Everlane's shirt dress

shoes: Saltwater sandals

lips: Tarte Lipsurgence Lip Tint in Fiery

accessories:  Target Totes umbrella

 

I'm not a mustache-loving girl (unless they're attached to a popsicle stick and used for photo purposes)….but…

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So hairy, yet still so hot.  I'm confused.

xo,

S

 

June 2, 2014

TEAM FANNY PACK! (Oh yes I did just go there)

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GO TEAM!  

Fanny packs, Mamas.  I'm totally in.  I tested them out for reader Melissa, and the whole hands-free thing is life-changing.  I forgot how good it was, Mamas.  Hands-free is so, so good. 

It all started with Melissa's email:

I’m a long time reader and huge fan of your blog. I value your opinion in all things fashion, and especially appreciate your high and low price point options. I’ve used the price-per-wear argument many times with my husband! I’m 37 with 3 kids (ages 9, 7 & 4).

Summertime and festival season is fast approaching. Thankfully, our family no longer requires a diaper bag or loads of emergency snacks when we hit the town. But, I always need my keys, phone and some money. I hate stuffing all that in my pockets, so what are my most unobtrusive options? Last weekend, I stuffed it all in my trusty butt pack and was ready to go. However, my ultra-hip 9 year-old strongly disapproved (photo attached—I love how the Despicable Me band-aid reminds us she is not a teenager J). Can you suggest anything for this situation? I’m imagining something like a leather belt with a small purse attached—but not something that looks like the holster the workers at beauty counters wear for their makeup brush collection.

Thanks so much for your input!

– Melissa

Downwithfannypacks

 

 

Ok so first of all, I need to copy your nine-year-old's exact outfit.  

Secondly….thanks for including a pic.  It helped me narrow down the whole what works/what doesn't pretty quickly.  I think fanny packs can work, but it has to be in one of the two following combinations:

Super chic fanny pack + casual outfit

or

Casual fanny pack + super chic outfit

 

For the purposes of testing out the fanny, I picked up Herschel Supply Co's canvas fanny pack because A. it's $25 and B. dressing around a casual fanny pack is the harder of the two. 

 

Tip 1:  Wear Your Fanny Slung Low on the Hips

I think this goes without saying, but casual fanny packs should be slung low like a tool belt, rather than around your waist like an actual belt.  (If you do opt for the seriously fancy fanny packs, they can be worn higher up, but should still stay an inch or so below the snap on your jeans.)

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wearing:

shirt: Madewell Linen Folktale Blouse

jeans: old AG…try Acquaverde's Patched Skinny Jean

shoes: old Shoemint…similar sandals by Rebels

sunnies: Ray-Ban folding wayfarers

On Raines: Geofox pants and tee, saltwater surf sandals

On Pax: Tribe is Alive tank, FabKids pants, saltwater surf sandals….I like Nordstrom for kid's sunglasses

 

Tip 2:  Keep The Rest of Your Outfit Chic

The key to making your fanny look ironic rather than sad is to make sure that the rest of your outfit looks intentional.  Wear a pretty shirt, bust out your big girl lipstick, wear glam sunnies.  

   

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Tip 3:  Show Some Skin

Whether it's your arms, boobs, or a little bit of hip….adding some sex appeal really helps to style the fanny.  (And it'll make a believer out of your husband.)

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wearing:

tank: old Sunner…try Bailey 44's Mesh-Back Top (check out the back) or their fully cropped version if you dare

sweater: old Qi Cashmere – they make really cool, unusual cashmere sweaters like this one.

jeans: old AG…try Acquaverde's Patched Skinny Jean

accessories: Ray-Ban folding wayfarers, Chan Luu wrap bracelet

 

Tip 4 – Use a Fanny Pack to Belt a Dress 

You'll have to play around with this one – depending on the dress, you may need to violate the whole "wear fannys slung low" tip….but it can work.

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wearing:

dress: old DVF…but I'm DYING over this strapless minidress…or try Old Navy's basic strapless mini

shoes: old….but I'm seriously considering these Dolce Vita flat sandals with the cool beading

accessories: Gorjana Taner collar necklaceRay-Ban folding wayfarersChan Luu wrap bracelet

On Raines: Geofox Good Vibes Tee, FabKids shortssaltwater surf sandals

On Pax: Geofox Sunshine and Daydreams tee, Nico Nico dot surf shorts, saltwater surf sandals, old Atomic kid's pack….Osprey's Zip 25 is a similar size

 

 

 

Tip 5:  If Nothing Else, Wear Chic Shoes

This really should be my life mantra.  

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wearing:

shirt: French Connection (sold out)…try this French Connection top

shorts: A&F…try 

shoes: old Shoemint…also love Everlane's simple sandals

accessories: see above

On Raines: see above

On Pax: see above

(Notice that my kids wear the same stuff everyday?  They'd go weeks if I let them.)

 

 

Melissa, I suspect that if you swing your fanny pack around, let it ride a little lower on your hips, then swap out your sneaks for chic flat sandals…even your nine year old will approve.  

Ok you guys – let me have it: Are you still hating the fanny pack?  Actually, the new term is "belt bag", which make us Team Belt Bag.  Does that help?

GO TEAM.

xo,

S

 

 

 

 

May 28, 2014

What I’m Wearing To Workout And Run Around

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I've been wearing the heck out of this outfit.  I wear it to Pilates, I wear it to grab coffee, I wear it to run errands.  Or to eat "gelati" – one of the East Coasts' greastest inventions, IMHO. Gelati is like Hawaiian water ice, combined with seriously creamy soft serve ice cream.  

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Anyway, this outfit couldn't be easier:  sports bra, mesh top, crazy pants, metallic sandals.

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And cute baby feet.  Because my days with a baby are numbered. sob!

Thankfully, Mike and I make snugglers – even to the ripe old age of six.

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wearing:

mesh top: c/o Missguided Fishnet Jumper, $45 (I'm wearing a size 4)

sports bra: My boobs are fake, so I'm wearing this bralet by Spendid.  But Moving Comfort's real sportsbra looks just as good (and is nursing-friendly).

crazy pants: Zoe Karssen (SOLD OUT)…butBUTBUT….try the Zoe Karssen leopard print sweatpants (currently 70% off)…or the Zoe Karssen bat prints sweatpants (50% off)…I'm wearing an XXS.  

metallic sandals: old…try Yosi Samra's simple metallic sandal…or this DV gold sandal.

sunnies: Ray-ban

on Pax: Nico-Nico dot surf shorts, similar Gap tee

on Raines: Petit Bateau shorts bought on Thred Up…try this crewcut pair, also on Thredup

 

Have you heard of Missguided?  They're a UK-based online retailer of seriously cool fast fashion.  Think Forever21, but higher quality….and they ship for free to the US.  I met two of the Missguided gals at the Reward Style conference, and I'm now a huge fan.  My favorite piece was this mesh top, aka "Fishnet Jumper".  Confusing, I know.  Jumper.  Something in which one can jump?  Ok. 

I've also worn this, uh, Fishnet jumper over these Lululemon running shorts and a workout tank.  You'd never know I had just finished running.  Except for the beet-red complexion.  There's just no help for that.   Want to see pics?  (Of the outfit, not the face.  Obviously.)

ps.  The jumper also comes in black.

xo,

S

 

May 5, 2014

Ooooh Baby. These Sandals Make My Heart Beat Fast. (And they’re on sale at Piperlime!)

Piperlime is currently offering 20% off on orders over $150, 25% off orders over $300, and 30% off orders over $450 (use code SIZZLE by 5/7).

If you don't know Piperlime, they offer both free shipping and free return shipping, and are one of my favorite online shops for party dresses, easy summer basics (like this chambray romper or this mini dress), and – most importantly – shoes.  

Nothing – really, seriously NOTHING – can make an everyday uniform more interesting than a fabulous pair of shoes.  Boring tee?  Boring shorts? Cool shoes?  #nailedit

Here are a few pairs that I'm currently lusting over…..

Sandals

 

TOP ROW

1. DV by Dolce Vita Fiji, $69

These shoes make me pant a little bit. Nuff said.

2. Gentle Souls Break My Heart ($144 – $195 depending on color)

Comfort shoes gone glam.  

3. Loeffler Randall Gilda, $225

The details on this pair kill me:  the white bottom, the perfect color and shape of the ankle strap, the subtle flounce detail above the toe….and this brand is purported to make very comfortable shoes.  This is the difference, I suspect, between a $200 pair of sandals and the $80 pair I typically buy.  (Which, BTW, are trashed after one summer.  Sigh.)

 

MIDDLE ROW

4. Loeffler Randall Marmy Sandal, $195

I love how the edgier style is tempered by sweet scalloped details.  Also available in gold.

5. Steve by Steve Madden Barclay, $99

Love the buckles and black bottoms.  Way too cool for school.

6. Dolce Vita Fray Gladiators, $129

Yes.  Yes to these, I think.  I love how the black is so edgy and bad@ss, but I also love this pair in tan.  Go look – the tan and gold is beautiful. 

 

LAST ROW

7. Cynthia Vincent Mika, $275

This is my perfect shoe for summer events:  sexy and leg-lengthening, but with an ankle-wrap strap and solid wood heel for running around. If I hadn't recently bought these Dolce Vita Hexen sandals, I would pull the trigger on this pair.

8. Dolce Vita Danilo, $89

Like my Hexens, but with solid colors and half the price.  Love both color combinations offered (the other option is tan and pink). 

9.  French Connection Ina, $135

I often think that I need a pair of metallic silver shoes, but in reality, they often look too bridesmaid-y.  These?  Do NOT.  Sexy, with a practical, chunky heel.

 

I'm also lusting over this pair of camo Superga sneakers and these seriously perfect Frye boots.  (Boots!  IknowIknowIknow but they are fabulous.)

What to do…..what to do….

xo,

S

By May 5, 2014 3 No tags Permalink
April 29, 2014

Street Style: The Coolest Everyday Outfits From The Gals of Freda Salvador

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At the Reward Style conference, I was so pleased to meet Megan, Cris, and Hillary of Freda Salvador.  Freda Salvador is a small footwear company based in San Fran (you're looking at the entire company right here) who uses a family-owned factory in Spain to produce their line of cool, edgy, and, to quote Megan, "infinitely walkable" shoes and boots.

That's a big statement, infinitely walkable.  So as cute young bloggers teetered around us on their impossibly high heels, I fixed her with a skeptical look.  "No really!" Megan laughed.  "I'm a mom – I totally get it!"  

So we bonded – they were all great fun.  And I will say this:  The shoe leather is very soft.  

In addition to their shoes (which I did cross the conference room to ask about – I mean seriously, white oxfords, black laces?  I'm drooling) they were each(!!) wearing an outfit worth copying.  Love when I see a perfect mix of comfort and edge.  And y'all – I learned that in Dallas –  know how my heart beats fast whenever destroyed denim or camo is involved.

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On Cris:

(BTW, there's a baby bump underneath her chambray shirt)

headscarf: vintage Gucci….I'd probably try this Turban Headband at Anthropologie since I can't tie anything

shirt: MiH Simple Shirt in Chambray

necklace: Pamela Love Dagger Rosary

denim: Citizens of Humanity Maternity Skinny Jeans

shoes: Freda Salvador White Oxford with Cut-Outs

 

On Hillary:

glasses: Oliver Peoples

necklace: old…try Bauble Bar's black beaded necklace

jacket: Wilfred Free Rayder Jacket at Aritzia

top: from Planet Blue (now gone)…try Gap's Fitted Floral Shirt

denim: from Urban (gone)…try One Teaspoon's Freebird Skinny Jean (destroyed)

shoesFreda Salvador White Oxford with Cut-Outs

 

On Megan:

top: Madewell (gone).. try the  Lace Collage Tee at Anthropologie

necklace: J.Crew (gone)…try Bauble Bar's Crystal Feather Bib Necklace

pants: Sanctuary Camo pants (gone)…try Current/Elliott's Army Buddy Camo Pants…or maybe even these camo pants at LOFT?

denim top (wrapped around waist): Madewell Denim Shirt

shoes: Freda Salavador Ivory Snake Sandal

 

 

Megan, Cris and Hillary – so nice meeting you, and thank you again for being such good sports!

xoxo,

S

April 9, 2014

Reader Q | Styling Around a Post-Partum ‘Beer Belly’ While Wearing Baby On Your Back?

Reader Question:

Hi Shana,

I was wondering if you had any thoughts/ ideas on what to wear when carrying your baby or toddler on your back?  I carry my son around a lot & find I have to think carefully about what I'm wearing as the belt of my ergo is obviously quite tight & so even though I'm pretty slim it makes me look like I have a bit of a beer belly ( I'm from the UK, I think you'd call this a "pooch"!).

At the moment I usually wear a long tshirt underneath the belt then pull my sweater or sweatshirt over the top so it kinda hangs over the belt, hiding (hopefully) the squidgy, bulgy bit. Im not sure how this looks from behind….i think its ok, as long as my jeans/ trousers aren't too skinny. Thoughts?

Thanks so much, I love your blog & congrats on finishing your treatment.,your hair looks great btw!

Chloe x

 

Answer:

Thanks, Chloe!  And YES.  I totally get what you are saying.  Both of my boys have spent a good deal of their lives in my well-worn Ergo, but Superchunk Pax has been, more often than not, on my back.  

So.  I have two words for you, my friend:  Ponchos and CropTops.

 

Crop Tops

Crop tops, now that they are becoming a thing again, are starting to actually show skin.  I don't think I need to tell any new mom that we don't want those.  Find a short, swingier top that hits right above the Ergo belt.  Ergo….  (ha ha – get it?)

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I've so helpfully switched this pic to black-and-white so you know it's from yesteryear.  (Which is also why I have hair.)

But see how my shirt is short?  Actually, "Short Shirts" may be a better moniker than "Crop Tops" now that I think about it….but my point is the same:  something with a little bit of swing, something a tad short in the front will help hide a beer belly – even while babywearing. (I typically layer mine over a cami, just in case of wind, but if your stomach is in better shape than mine, you could skip the extra layer.)

 

 

Ponchos

Ponchos are basically large trapeze tops (which means that the swing starts at or above your bustline).  So anything with a bit of a trapeze-top-like-swing will work, as long as it isn't too long.  

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Let's see if I have a side pic….

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wearing:

sweater: similar, 30% off at Juicy

windbreaker: K-Way

cropped sweater (layered underneath): similar at Forever 21

denim: Rag and Bone

boots: wish they were these

Bag:  Lily Jade

Carrier: Ergo organic carrier in "dark" chocolate (not so dark now, after 6 years of hard use….gosh, I love this thing still)

on Pax: windbreaker, leggings, shoes

 

Honorable Mention:  Dolman Sleeve Tops

Here's another old pic – this time I'm wearing my old J.Crew dolman-sleeve sweatshirt.  If you can't find a poncho, dolman sleeve tops may offer enough volume to hide the belly. Either let the hem hang over the babycarrier belt, or do a half-tuck into the belt (pretend the babycarrier belt is the waistband of your jeans).

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wearing:

sweatshirt: similar on sale at 6pm

shorts: Madewell

sandals: Saltwater

hat: similar, $20 at Nordstrom

Carrier: Kokopax carrier (Kokopax was bought by Sassy, new product won't be available until later this summer.  To be notified, fill out the form located here.  Just put "kokopax updates" into the comment section.)

 

 

Thanks for writing in, Chloe!  Hope this helps!!

And Mamas – any other tips for dressing around a baby backpack?  The beer belly thing is no joke.  

xo,

 

March 13, 2014

Weekend WOOT WOOT

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I'm getting the Spring shopping bug.  It's like the sun shows its face for one tiiiny second, and I immediately want to bust out a floral t-shirt (specifically this one – Lands' End – who knew?).  To appease the shopping beast, I'll be coming out with some fun Spring shopping posts next week.

In reality, I seem to be wearing mostly black.  Still?  I know.  I feel edgier with all-black and short hair I guess.  And I've been wearing the heck out of this little ponte blazer again.  I like the insta-polish with the super-stretchy fabric.  Mine was purchased in – ready for this? – 2003 I kid you not. Clearly, they have staying power.  I really like this one.  So sleek, with a cool brass button.  Totally perfect for grounding Spring prints.  (Or, uh, sweatshirts and too-big jeans.) 

Mike and I snuck out for a mid-week date night.  The nanny stayed a couple extra hours and we hit happy hour.  Cheapest. Date. Ever.  Drink specials and $5 apps and the whole thing was under $50 with tip.  

And before I forget?  These shoes are comfortable!!  Like, soft and supple and comfortable.  Shocking, I know.  They look like the kind of flat shoes that anger me with their stiff sole.  Nope.  

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But let's do the normal Friday linky thing.  Here's what I've got:

 

Am dying to recreate this outfit.  I'd do it with Bradamant's black bodysuit, and either this fabulous denim pencil skirt….or this one at half the cost.  (Or maybe even Old Navy?) 

I just found out that my favorite high-waisted MiH denim comes in a gorgeous light wash.  They call to me, Mamas.  THEY CALL TO ME.  But at – gack – $325?  Is this how it starts?  Remember when we were all choking on the $100 price tag of a pair of Sevens?  Is $300 the new "standard" price for high-end denim?  It seems to be the price tag of all the pairs I fall in love with (stupid R13 and their perfectly faded not-too-black-wash jeans which have not gone on sale in 8 months).  Know what $300 jeans are?  Besides drool-worthy  ANNOYING.

Have you heard about the 4 year old fashion designer?  She's freaking awesome. (And so is her mum.) 

I'm working on the next family photo article, and was blown away by the book, The Unforgettable Photograph: 228 Ideas, Tips, and Secrets for Taking the Best Pictures of Your Life.  More about this book later, but it was too good to sit on (and under $10, so WOW).  Whether you shoot with an iPhone or a fancy DSLR, this book will inspire.  It's totally changed my own photography game.

I'm in the most recent episode of Meagan Francis' Kitchen Hour podcast.  This time we chatted about Spring break and dressing for Spring (while there is still snow on the ground).  These are so fun – I LOVE that girl.  (And I think she's looking for reader questions, so feel free to let us know if there's anything you'd like to hear us blather on about…) 

Happy, happy weekend, Mamas.  

xo,
S

 

October 9, 2013

Mom Street Style: Three Readers do ANMJ Their Way

I think one of my very favorite things is when a reader emails me a pic and says, "I did it!"  You guys are awesome.  Love sharing the love so we can all be a bit more inspired.

 

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How awesome is this pic of reader Meredith rocking the Sporty-Chic trend?  She writes:

In Texas, it's most definitely still summer. But, inspired by your recent sporty chic post and a rare rainy day, I cranked the AC and tried out my new Onitsuka Tigers with a vintage varsity sweater I found in the Halloween section at Goodwill, which incidentally has my initial and a tennis patch–tennis being the only sport I follow besides ballet! Score!

Makes me want to sew a varsity letter onto one of Mike's work cardigans.  Wonder if he'd mind…??  Who am I kidding? I don't sew.  (I staple.)   But here's a pretty fab DIY for those inclined.

Otherwise, Modcloth has a cool letter cardigan (and hey!  One that looks exactly like my sold-out Nordies baseball sweater-jacket)…and I'm also loving the guy's version as ASOS.  Delia's has a cute one, too.

Continue Reading…

August 27, 2013

The Two Safe Ways I’m Wearing a Crop Top (And Two Moms Who Went All-In)

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While I was home in June, my sister and I had a discussion about crop tops.  She was pro, I was…meh.  Until I remembered that I had one.  (It was on clearance for $4.99 at Ann Taylor.  Reason enough, right?)

And actually, I do like this top.  You've seen it before here with a high-waisted maxi skirt….and a high-waist something, I think, is the key.  

(The high waist helps tame a squishy belly.  Really.  It's like Spanx.)  

Continue Reading…