I bought these bellbottom leggings on a whim before Christmas and holy crap . . . they are so comfortable and actually make your legs look super long. Anything that is that comfortable and flattering gets my vote. Did I mention they’re under $10 with the sale??
This outfit has all of the markings of a decent, everyday outfit: skinny jeans, ankle boots, graphic tee, and a cardi. But something is…off. The proportions aren’t quite right, and if my hips were any wider I’d end up in that big-hips-tiny-feet situation and really: no one wants that.
So let’s fix it.
What I Don’t Like
1. The cardigan hits at the widest part of my hips.
Shorter cardigans are hard to pull off in general (they really have to hit in exactly the right spot), and this case, your eye is drawn down to the widest part of my hips. Not the most flattering option.
2. The cardigan is vaguely matronly through the bust.
The high neckline of crewneck tee + the high neckline of the cardi can easily become matronly. The graphic tee helps keep it edgy….but it’s teetering….
3. Proportions Are Off
The really short boots + the short cardi….it’s not balanced. In general, I find that a short-short proportion is often hard to pull off. Long-short typically looks more balanced.
Lately, my inbox has been filled with requests like these:
My biggest dilemma is finding a casual-yet-appropriate-for a beach wedding dress. Any ideas?!
We are fortunate enough to be able to take our family to the Caribbean for a sibling’s wedding in April. I need help! I will be 7 months post partum with a belly that still looks pregnant and I am hoping to still be breastfeeding. Where do I start to look for a dress that is appropriate for a beach wedding?
I’m always happy for an excuse to look at pretty pretty dresses. And if any occasion calls for a pretty pretty dress it’s a beach wedding. But not just any pretty dress – you need something…unstructured. And by “unstructured” I mean an unstructured feeling…something that feels light, breezy, something that goes with sun-kissed skin and windswept hair. Tailored perfection is not the goal (even if the wedding is fancy). My rule of thumb? Look for a silky, flowy, or glamorous dress that could also be worn with flipflops in some cool-girl California wedding. That’s your dress for a beach wedding.
Once the pretty dress is found, I recommend you finish off your glamorous self in the best beachy-casual kind of way: with flat metallic sandals and simple jewelry (I like a few gold bangles). Warm it up with a denim jacket (for a casual wedding), a pretty wrap (for a fancy wedding – and by ‘wrap’ I mean ‘lightweight scarf’)…or a white blazer.
I remember when I first saw a pair of Frye boots years ago. My fashionable big sister was wearing them (of course), and I remember thinking “Oooh . . . those are so cool.” I immediately wanted a pair and asked her where to get them. Then I saw the price tag . . . yikes. Not quite in my college budget. BUT. She still has (and wears) those boots. That exact same pair have withstood years of wear and tear and have outlasted countless pairs of my cheaper (and therefore cheaply made) boots. Frye is one of those brands that are seriously worth the money. Shana has two from the 70’s (literally – the 70’s!) and they still look amazing. When I asked how she takes care of them to make them last so long? She doesn’t. They’re just such high quality that they last. SO . . . here’s the best part: 6pm is having a seriously huge sale on Frye. Shana & I have rounded up our favorites to share with you. This pair caught both our eyes.
More footwear picks in the footwear shop. Most are mom-friendly, some are just plain hot.
Hey there – what a week! We got back from Michigan last weekend, and jumped right back into the daily grind of work, school, and Raines’ 7th birthday. Poor kid. Birthdays so close to the holidays are tough.
But I’m feeling, uh, cautiously optimistic about this year. 2014 was such a year of recovery that it left little room for anything else. My house is in a permanent state of disaster, my finances are jumbled (we’ve been in the process of “changing banks” for 6 months GAAAH), and my get-kids-to-school-on-time success rate is hovering around 20%.
Don’t even ask me about homework. I’m still pretending it doesn’t exist.
But, on the upside, I can feel my energy coming back. As of Jan 1, I’ve been on tamoxifen for a year now, and most of the crazy-making side effects (hot flashes, insomnia) have evened out (thanks mostly to accupunture, I suspect). I still need to…um…finish making ‘the girls’ look pretty (nipple tattoos people, all the cool cancer kids are doing it), and the whole process should be a crack up. I mean seriously life is so weird.
But good, too. It’s so good to feel good. That fact astounds me: I feel good. Sometimes I feel like shouting I FEEL GOOOOOOOD!!!! because I really, really didn’t for so long. I had no idea, when all of this cancer shit went down, that almost two years would pass before I would feel like myself again. Crazy, RIGHT????
So I’m making some changes around here – both in the Draugelis pad and The Mom Edit. (Don’t worry – all fun stuff.)
For The Mom Edit, this year I want to focus on the fun. Fashion is fun! The process of discovering ourselves, discovering our style…it should be FUN. Expressing ourselves doesn’t need to be such a serious endeavor (nor does it need to be mistake-free). So we’ll be playing around with outfit fixing and finishing (and I suspect we’ll have our share of flops)….and Scotti is going to be doing some seriously FUN makeup tutorials. You beauty mavens will love them, and the rest of us? It’ll help us get out of our comfort zone. My friend Jess will also be back with more of her gorgeous art. (Yay!!)
I’ve also added one more contributing author to The Mom Edit team. She’s a mom of two with seriously amazing everyday style…and a whole big dose of ‘keeping it real’. You’re going to love her.
Also, we’re working through some techie issues with the site, trying to get everything running as smoothly as possible. I seriously appreciate your patience with a few of the glitches.
Around the Draugelis Pad….we’ve been starting to go through the process of decluttering, based on the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and WOW. I know I mentioned this book a few weeks ago, but now that we’re starting to put it into practice…it’s the first time I can actually see an end to this mess. Even Mike is totally on-board. (The author had him at “professional organizers are hoarders” HA!) So for the next 6 months, each week we’re going to be decluttering some portion of the house, based on the simple question, “does this bring you joy?” So easy, yet powerful. It’s surprising that one simple question brings so much clarity.
Fun Links For The Weekend
I recently bought a Tools4Wisdom Planner and it kinda blew my mind. The goal setting pages (yearly, monthly, weekly) are EVERYTHING. I can’t recommend this one highly enough.
If I had a dollar everytime a reader wrote in about how amazing the Bobeau Asymmetrical Fleece Cardigan is…well. It belongs in a new-mama/post-partum/nursing-friendly/body-changing hall of fame. And now it’s on sale.
Enjoy your weekend!! And local Mamas – the Okee Dokee Brothers (friends of a friend!) is playing a kid’s show at World Cafe Live on Saturday. Their sound is kinda bluegrassy, and their first album won a grammy. Should be pretty cool.
ps. I’m in the process of creating an edited shop of Outfit Making Accessories, and am totally obsessed with ear crawlers (they look better than they sound). Shoot me links if you find anything fabulous.
I received the following email from reader K, simply titled, “help”.
I constantly struggle with what to wear. I’ve been much better since finding your site, however I have had a very stressful year and I am a stress eater. I wish I wasn’t…but now I feel terrible about myself and nothing fits. I’m back on track but the weight comes off much slower than it goes on… so instead of being miserable I’m just going to deal… however, what do I do? Nothing fits.
I’m so upset because my husbands 40th surprise party is in Jan….in NYC. I want to buy something new, but am looking for advice. What would you do? Would you buy bigger clothes? I don’t want to just stay here…. I want to lose the weight.
First of all, K, you are NOT alone. I can’t count the number of emails I’ve received from readers, all asking a similar question. There’s just something so challenging about this time in our lives, isn’t there? Or heck – there’s just something challenging about life, period.
Here’s what I think:
I believe that everyone has the right to feel beautiful and sexy and powerful. To feel like a shit-hot woman. Ironically, this often t00-elusive feeling has virtually nothing to do with how we actually look. I remember reading an article once about this amazing, glamorous woman in her 60’s. She was rocking dark eyeliner and diamonds on the regular. When asked about her “beauty secrets” she gave a reply I’ve never forgotten: “It’s simple! I don’t look in the mirror. If I can’t see the wrinkles, they must not be there.”
Don’t look in the mirror. If that’s not the key to a happier life, I don’t know what is.
Of course, her reply was completely toungue-in-cheek (I mean that dark eyeliner had to go on somehow, right?). But the sentiment behind her comment is what really appeals to me: act (or dress) like who you are. And who we are on the inside – our best selves – they don’t always show outwardly, at least not in the ways we want them to. Life is often a big, complicated, crazy mess. We have babies, we get stressed, we gain weight, we get wrinkled, we get cancer and go bald (ha!)…is it any wonder that sometimes the people in the mirror are…strangers?
One of the reasons I am so passionate about style is simply because it is one of the easiest forms of daily self-expression. Through style we can attempt to express our true selves. Despite the wrinkles and the bags and the excess pounds and the chemo rashes….there we are. In our dark eyeliner and diamonds. (Mine will probably be fake.)
So, K, to answer your question….YES. For goodness sake, go shopping. Your self – your exact self right at this point in time – has had some Life to deal with. And you’re doing the best you can. I mean seriously Chick, rock on. So go find some clothes you adore that fit the body you have. A good fit + something that you love is bound to make every day brighter.
There are resolutions one makes in their pre-kid twenties (“this is MY YEAR and I will CLIMB MOUNTAINS and SEE THE WORLD, MAN”), there are resolutions one makes as a new mom (“sleeeeeeeeep”) and then there are these: Style resolutions. (AKA…the only resolutions I have even a shot at sustaining).
I, Shana, in 2015….
….will experiment with dramatic silhouettes
Think swingy capes, midi skirts and huge, oversized scarves. I’m practically 5’3″ – what can go wrong? (Bonus points for crop tops or wide-leg trousers.)
…will [attempt to] wear hats like a big girl
Oooo….just out of the gate and I’ve already added a caveat. NOT A GOOD SIGN. So let’s call this one what it is: I’ll trot out a big-girl hat (definition: anything beyond beanies and baseball hats) ONCE, take a few pics, then immediately revert back to my beanies and baseball hats. Resolution resolved.
…will focus more on fixing my existing outfits than buying new pieces
Wha-what you say? What’s that? The Shopping Enabler say what?
YES. This year I resolve to take all of my daily wears, my everyday uniforms, my go-tos and my must-washes and my worn-outs and figure out WHAT THE WHAT to do with them. In some instances, it’s time for a replacement (jeans with holes in the bum, I’m talking to you). But in most cases, the fix is smaller: a woven belt, perhaps, that evokes just the right amount of 70’s fab….a tougher ankle boot to offset a precious top…a longer cardigan to create a lean silhouette with skinnies…the exact details are different for everyone, but I suspect we all have one thing in common: our outfit “finishing” needs work.
These final outfit details, however, are elusive. It’s why we stand in front of the mirror thinking NOPE….NOPE….stillll NOPE. It takes more time and thought to figure out how to finish an outfit than it does to simply buy something new. But if you get into this practice – and it IS practice, I promise – you’ll be much happier with your wardrobe (and bonus! your wardrobe can be much smaller).
So that’s the theme for 2015, over here at The Mom Edit. Outfit finishing, outfit fixing, whatever you want to call it – it’s ON. Starting tomorrow. I’d love for you to join us.
Happy New Year!
ps. If you need help with an outfit, feel free to send it in! Or tag #themomeditfixthis on Instagram. We’ll get the ball rolling soon.
Shopbop’s sale just got even better: Take an additional 25% off already reduced items with code CHEERS2015. The sale ends at midnight on 1/1. (The top above was $275, is now on sale for $82, plus an additional 25% off.)
Shopbop is one of my very favorite online boutiques – not only because of the free shipping/free return shipping (although that plays a MAJOR role) – but because their selection is spot-on. If you are looking to upgrade to some interesting basics, start with this sale. (BTW – I’ve gotten a few questions about how to put pieces together – ‘shop your closet’ type of questions. WELL. In 2015 we’ll be hitting that theme HARD, so stay tuned.)
Here are my favorite ‘interesting basics’ from the Shopbop sale:
You guys were right: The Nordstrom Clearance Sale IS totally overwhelming. But the Bears-Lions game is on and these innings seem to stretch on forever (ha, ha…that was a joke), so…yeah. Here are my picks:
If we get a little more time I’ll tackle shoes and bags. Get it? TACKLE? HA, HA….