Thursday, September 18, 2014

9 pieces | 9 outfits… fall 2014!

One of the most popular series here on the blog is definitely the 9 pieces | 9 outfits posts.  This fall I had fun pulling together some classic pieces with some great trends to create an easy to wear capsule wardrobe for fall.   I love the laid back vibe this season has with comfortable sweaters, track pants, tailored jackets and simple and gorgeous shoes.

I hope these 9 pieces and 9 outfits give you inspiration on how to mix and match your wardrobe and key pieces this fall.

the accessories: 

To see all the 9 pieces | 9 outfits posts - click here!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

my everyday style: le tote boutique box!

2014 is all about the subscription box. Is it not? And I, for one, am a huge fan of this type of service.

Enter Le Tote - a try before you buy personalized clothing subscription service. You tell them what you like/love/want to try and then they send you a box of clothing & accessories in your size for you to try… or buy! You decide!  You can wear stuff and return it all or wear stuff and keep and buy the pieces you like - even at a discounted rate.  One of the things I love the best is that the shipping is LIGHTING fast.  It's almost unbelievable how fast you can exchange your tote for a new one.  And with a monthly subscription you can change in your tote as many times as you want.  With this type of service you can totally experiment with your style and even treat the service like your own personal shopper.

I've gotten a few totes from Le Tote already and I have loved trying new styles and brands that I usually wouldn't choose for myself.  This gorgeous sweater has already gotten it's fair share of attention in my closet and this delicate bracelet that they recently sent couldn't be more my style lately.  I highly recommend you try out the service yourself!

Today I've partnered with Le Tote to not only highlight their really cool service - but to also give my readers an awesome discount on their first tote.  Use code: GoodLife for 50% off your first tote! (awesome, right!?!?)

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Top, via Le Tote
Bracelet, via Le Tote
Jeans, Gap (similar, similar or similar)
Shoes, Madewell (similar or similar)
Sunglasses, Ray Ban
Bag, J.Crew

*this post is sponsored by Le Tote in partnership with Collectively, all opinions are my own.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

lady like for fall…

The general theme and "style" for this fall is super neutral and a little on the tomboy side.  I'm loving the neutral vibe, I could wear black/grey/cream/navy for days on end.  But the tomboy trend throws me for a loop - I love the sneakers/graphic tee/ripped jeans stuff too… just sometimes I feel like I still need to add a little dash of femininity to my looks.

These lady-like pieces will take your neutral/tomboy style to new heights this fall...

Monday, September 15, 2014

my everyday style: waxed denim this fall!

It's always nice when a few trends carry over from one year to the next.  Not only is it easy on the wallet… but it's like bringing out old friends from your closet.  Waxed denim are one of those trends I was happy to see up for a repeat season.  Since I pretty much only wear jeans all fall/winter, I love to see variations on denim to keep my looks interesting and fresh.

Waxed denim elevates a look just a touch - I love that a simple outfit like this suddenly looks a little on the dressy side with waxed denim, heels and a sparkly necklace. On another note, a reader recently asked how I wash my waxed denim.  I wash them on cold water inside out and let them air dry.  This has successfully kept the "wax" look shiny - also I wash them as little as possible, but that is my standard rule for any jeans.

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Denim Jacket, American Eagle - ℅ (old but similar)
Sweater, LOFT
Necklace, Baublebar (similar or similar)
Bag, Madewell
Sunglasses, Warby Parker
Heels, Sole Society (similar or similar)

Friday, September 12, 2014

my everyday style: the first of fall!

We've definitely gotten our first feel of fall here in West Michigan with a few very chilly mornings lately! Brrrrr! I'm still in denial that bathing suits and flip flops aren't in our normal repertoire of clothing anymore… so I still sneak in a few sandal wears here and there.  Usually I am sneaking in jeans & sweatshirts in August… but this year it was the other way around.  The summer was just too too short.

There are a few things about fall I sure do love though…
- dark nail polish again
- dark hair again (just got the summer sun taken out of my hair and it feels so fresh!)
- optional leg shaving
- cozy scarf wearing
- quiet afternoons at home while my kids are at school
- cider and donut indulging, which I have plans to do this weekend!

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Scarf, H&M (old but similar, similar or similar)
Sweater, Banana Republic - 40% off today!!!!
Jeans, Gap (old but similar, similar or similar) - 25% off today!
Bag, J.Crew - arguably the best leather bag available for the price. I adore this bag.
Sunglasses, Ray Ban

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

on my radar/September!

Just a few things catching my eye lately… what's been on your radar lately?

druzy bracelet… obsessed with anything druzy lately. So gorgeous, right?

distressed jeans… I'm perfectly okay with adding another pair to my harem.

cozy swingy roomy sweaters… this one in every color please.

j.crew scents… of course I have to hop on this bandwagon. Has anyone smelled these in person? Curious to know how they smell.

eyeglasses… back to school season always has me craving a new pair of specs.  You know?

vintage LV… vintage LV has been on my mind lately and I just discovered Piperlime is carrying select styles. Very intriguing. I would love to hear your thoughts on LV/vintage/vintage LV.  Do tell.

classic green Hunter boots… winter is a b*#$%! why not have another pair of boots to make it easier to handle.

Also, on a completely different note.  A blogger that I had never heard of (and am SO glad I discovered her blog) recently sent me some love by linking to me.  So insanely sweet of her. Remember the old days when bloggers linked to each other other the time. I realized I miss those days.  So as an added bonus:

Here are a few bloggers on my radar lately… 
Un-fancy, she was so sweet to link to me and I just LOVE her blog and the premise of her seasonal shopping strategy. Seriously, check this gal out.
Burlap and Lace, she can decorate my house any time. Girl's got style.
Merrick's Art, she sat next to me at Garance's keynote speech at Alt Design Summit, since then I've been a fan.
Brown Eyed Fox, my hair dresser just told me about her the other night, she doesn't blog much but her Instagram is great.  (I kinda want her dog)

Just a few blogs I'm loving on lately… I'll bring you some more soon!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

my everyday style: fall re-runs part 2!

I've just got a few more re-runs on outfits here on the blog while I wait for the weather to start catching up with the season… we've had some super cool mornings and evenings here lately.  Fall is here! I'll be back on the regular outfit posting very, very soon here!

In the meantime, here are a few more of my favorite looks from last fall.

Monday, September 8, 2014

how do you feel about the "athleisure" trend?

The athleisure trend is one that has been on the brink of emerging for years now… think the Juicy Couture sweatsuits that Oprah raved about, or the hundred dollar yoga pants that women swore they could wear to the office because they fit so well when Lululemon first launched.  I've never seemed to really subscribe to those notions.  Work out apparel is for the gym, not for days when I don't feel like getting dressed.

But lately the athleisure trend has really morphed into something different.  Leggings with cozy sweaters is kind of my jam… but tanks and compression pants for everyday wear isn't.  But now the line between those two ends of the spectrum has really blurred.  Absolutely stunning pieces is are now being introduced into the market as "athletic wear" so it's no surprise ladies are saying that they don't just want to wear those pieces for working out.  What do you think of this trend? Do you subscribe to the athleisure trend? Do you still think work out clothes are for the gym or can you see wearing them everyday too?

My opinion is that if you take the athleisure trend seriously and dress that way for day time that is fine… but leave the sweaty yoga pants at home after gym class. (although I do admit the other day I ran errands in my gym clothes because I had such a busy day).  Hey, rules are meant to be broken, right!?!

So I would love to hear your thoughts on this trend!  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

my everyday style: fall re-runs!

I'm in the mood for fall now that school has started. Give me apple pie, cozy sweaters, the last of the bonfires and warm apple cider.  But the weather isn't really quite there yet… not in my neck of the woods and probably not in your neck of the woods either.  We are so close… so while I (and hopefully you!) enjoy the last of the summer weather - let's take a look at some greatest hits from last fall!

(above: similar shoes, similar sweatshirt, similar chambray)

(above: similar trench, similar sweater, similar bag)

(above: similar waxed jeans, similar sweater, similar shoes)

(above: similar scarf, similar bag, similar shoes)

(above: similar graphic tee, similar jacket)

(above: jeans, similar bag)

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

fall must haves 2014: boots!

It's hard to choose a favorite item to buy in the fall… but boots definitely are up there on the list.  And while I don't always love the price tag that comes with boots I have always found that you get what you pay for in this department. Spending $100 to $200 or more on boots is definitely a hit to the clothing budget and pocketbook but putting on a great pair of boots and having them last you through the cold and long winter and then some is a great feeling.

Leather boots are always worth the investment and this time of the year is the best time to snag a new pair.  Here are a few of my favorite picks for this fall and a couple of ways I hope to style them up!

(above: one, two, three, four, five, six)

(get the look above: jeans, sweatshirt, glasses, boots, bag)

(get the look above: bracelet, leggings, sweater, bag, boots, scarf)

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

my everyday style: it's (unofficially) fall!

It's unofficially officially fall.  Which gives me major whiplash and leaves me a little dumbfounded to be honest. Wasn't it just June?

Apparently not.  My kids start school today (praise the Lord, hallelujah!) and I'll be busy this week getting caught up on whatever I didn't get done over the past three months of non stop fun and complete indulgence.  Which is pretty much everything.  So here's to fall and to an "everything" to-do list on a Tuesday that feels like a Monday.

Enter an easy outfit… that's about all I can handle this morning.

(photos by Jennifer Ketchum)

Oxford Top, H&M (similar)
Shorts, Gap
Bag, J.Crew
Sandals, Sole Society
Watch, Daniel Wellington - ℅ 

Friday, August 29, 2014

the damage: August 2014!

At the end of each month this year I am planning to pause to take a look at my spending as it's related to my closet. I call these posts "the damage." Each month my target budget is $300 and only 5 pieces of clothing or shoes. For 2014 I chose 5 items because I am working on making my closet a more curated place and also to try to put an end to the constant closet clean outs where loads of clothes get sent to charity - but I have failed pretty miserably at the 5 things goal. It was a lofty goal I experimented with this year and I guess you win some you lose some, but this was in the "lose" category for sure.  Oh well, just keeping it real here for you gals!

For some this budget may sound like a lot and for others it may not... for me personally this is my monthly goal. It works for my budget and lifestyle and doesn't break the bank. Shopping budgets are a personal thing, but I share mine here to show how I stretch my budget and work to create a well curated and fully stocked closet.

It's hard to believe we are wrapping up August! I am headed out this weekend so I thought I would check in with my August clothing budget before the weekend fun begins.

J.Crew Factory, Quilted Vest, $98 with $5 off was $93
J.Crew Factory, Warm Spun Elbow Patch Sweater, $78 with promotions was $62.40
J.Crew, Cocoon Coat, $365 with 25% was $273.75
Old Navy, Mid Rise Rockstar Jeans, $36.50 with promotions and coupon was $12.03
Banana Republic, High Low Cardigan, $89.50 with 50% off was $44.75
Banana Republic, Zip Back Cream Sweater, $69.50 with 40% off was $41.70
Banana Republic, Faux Leather Sloan Dress, $150 with 50% off was $75

Total Spent: $509.63 (saved: $376.87)

Thoughts on the budget: I splurged on the Cocoon coat and I'm still undecided about it. It is a GORGEOUS coat, just stunning. But that price isn't messing around.  I'm glad I got it on sale but it really busted the budget and is hands down the most expensive piece of clothing I have ever bought (handbags not included).  The J.Crew Factory pieces have me a little bummed out as I bought them in store hardly on sale - I didn't do my online research before shopping and I really should have because I definitely didn't get the best price for them.  That can be the problem with shopping on vacation sometimes - I wasn't really thinking and I don't have a store near me for a price adjustment or returns.  Oh well, live and learn.

Thoughts on the pieces: My fall shopping is off to a solid start! I'm starting to really get excited for fall (even though it's brutal to say good bye to such a fun summer) and shopping for fall clothes always helps.  I went for a lot of neutrals, which is definitely my style lately - but also the predominant style this season it seems too.  These pieces will be great staples for my fall wardrobe.  The dress is for a fun upcoming event - I can't remember the last time I bought a cocktail dress so I am super excited about that.

Did you blog about your clothing budget this month? Leave a link so I can check it out!