cardigans, cashmere, and being the “perfect” size 00.

As a child of the 1980s, mail order catalogs were my primary source of ideas and inspiration. JCPenney and Spiegel catalogs served as dogeared reference bibles for All the Things I Coveted, and Current catalogs for stationery and paper related obsessions. I felt a jolt of elation when a new one came in the mail, heading straight for the blue and orange plaid family room couch to curl up and devour its contents. The massive 500 page Christmas catalogs often came in August, just in time for back to school shopping. As the crisp fall air moved in each year, I was swept up in fresh tartan pleated skirts and dresses, corduroy pants, bright sweaters, and patent leather shoes. Colorful, New England preppy casual clothing makes me happy and reminds me of those simpler days. Online shopping just doesn't provide the same thrill.

My emergent fuddyduddy side is coming out typing this because back then, things were high quality, made to last. I only recognize this now because most clothing items I buy barely last a year. I regularly use a massive monogrammed 25+ year old beach towel from Lands’ End, still in amazing condition. An oversized red thermal J. Crew waffle knit shirt from the same era has held up valiantly, despite a few holes at the cuffs, living out its retirement in my pajama rotation.

I got my first cashmere sweater as a birthday gift from my family in December of 2002. It was a twin set, also a first for me. It seemed so luxurious, almost excessive to have not just a button up cardigan, a wardrobe staple, but a short sleeve sweater too that matched. The twin set is a classic retro look, and turning 26 felt like the right time to own my first real grown up investment piece.

I remember reading in the Lands’ End catalog about the specialness of their cashmere, the stories of how they trekked all over the globe to get the best goat wool from the finest regions. I never finished reading any of those pages, but the overall impression was that they seemed to really care and have integrity in their process, although they could have fooled me because I knew absolutely nothing about goats or cashmere. I chose a warm camel color that was unusual for me, more subdued in contrast to my typically bright palette.

The sweater came at a time of extreme and rapid health decline from my disease. I was the thinnest I’d ever been in my adult life. Unable to keep weight on, I dipped down to 85 pounds at my lowest point, weighing the same as I did when I was first diagnosed at age 12. It was the smallest size they offered, an extra small, and at my most dire, it hung off my dying frame. My world was crumbling around me at a dizzying pace, and the soft, cozy sweater set brought me comfort and cover in a perilous and exposed time.

My now ex-boyfriend recently asked, were you always smiling in photos when you were 85 pounds? It was an interesting observation. Yes, I think I was. We discussed how photos, though they can be a helpful reference point and anchor in time, certainly do not always reveal what’s truly going on. Even though I had zero excess on my frame, I was really critical of this body. I had lost weight very quickly. When I stood naked in front of the mirror my eyes would focus on the skin hanging from my frame and my distended, round belly, malnourished and crying out for help.

My Dad put a bubble wrap boat in the bathtub for me because my bones were poking out and painful. All my systems were failing- I hadn’t had sugar in a year following a very specific diet, and yet my teeth were rotting. My body was inflamed; I fought a host of infections. Clothes hid the dramatic and hellish rollercoaster my body was experiencing, allowing me to present a rosier picture to the world while everything else spun completely out of my control.

My disease was completely on the inside, which often caused confusion for others, and anxiety and stress for me. “But you don’t look sick!” is a common refrain. Oftentimes the better I looked, the worse I felt. Skinny, with clear porcelain skin… what’s your secret? They’d say. Trust me, you do not want this secret.

I remember sitting on the couch that birthday evening in my parent’s living room in Austin, Texas where I was staying for a few months in between apartments, talking to my dear friend Angel about clothes among other things. She cautioned me against buying too many things at my current size, double zero (00), because I wouldn’t be there for long. I have to admit there was something exhilarating and thrilling about being this size. I had become so good at ignoring the constant pain, and buying clothes, focusing on something external, pretty, and easy brought me much needed temporary pleasure. Despite my glaring miseries, there were things I liked about my dying body. It was a “perfect” size - for once in my life, I could wear whatever I wanted, and there was a strange freedom in knowing everything I put on would fit.

The high cost of being this size didn’t outweigh the desire to live or find health once again within my grasp. The mind does strange things in crisis though, and collecting size 00 and extra small clothing was an ephemeral straw I clung to as long as I could. When I'm a certain size, I never think I will be anything but that size, and there was something pure and stripped down about this one. It was a relief in a way to have almost nothing left, an absence of a body that brought me so much torment.

I hung on to those cashmere sweaters for a long time. They made it miles down the road into my North Carolina years, expanding gracefully as I expanded, and were well loved by both the moths and I before we finally parted ways. My orange velour retro designer leisure sweatpants were the last of the tiny things to go from that period. They reminded me of Bert and Ernie’s shirts from Sesame Street. I smiled as I packed them up along with other extra small items to sell at an upcycle clothing shop. Angel was right- that moment in time was temporary. I didn't know then just what a good thing that would be.

Blowing out the candles on my special homemade birthday cake
wearing my new sweater set, Dec. 3rd, 2002.

Birthday celebrations with my friend Angel.

what were you wearing?

“She leaves a little bit of sparkle wherever she goes.” -  Kate Spade

I bought this silver jacket recently for the chilly days in the Bay Area where I’ve recently relocated, and it sheds little bits of metallic silver fabric wherever I go- on my face and hair, on my boyfriend, on the couch. I call it my Bowie jacket. It reminds me of those silver ankle boots I had in 4th grade, a trendsetter early on. Classic in their 80’s extremism, obnoxious, garish, and so perfect for me. I coveted the boots, and yet I had trouble wearing them... the sad pull to conform was strong even then. Like the boots, I’ve always felt over the top (more on that later).

During a recent dinner conversation in the city with my boyfriend Casey and dear college friend Alex I realize that one of the key things I remember about encounters is what we are wearing. It becomes a joke that Casey riffs off of throughout the night as I tell various stories- “but what were you wearing?”

I remember what he was wearing when we first met on a crisp Sunday morning last December. A red and yellow (cardinal and gold, I am later corrected) Iowa State pullover that reminds me of McDonald’s color palette, and an orange backwards fitted hat. Pretty casual first date attire, I observed as I spotted him leaning against the far wall at Peet’s coffee in Oakland. I definitely fussed more over my outfit. We were going hiking so I needed to be functional but also sharp and at my best because, hello, this was a first date! And getting up, ready and out the door to meet someone at 10:00am was already a bit of a stretch.

So per my usual M.O. I tried on various options the day before and settled on knit black yoga pants, a fitted moss green North Face fleece, and bright blue Saucony sneakers. I would have to charm him with my dazzling personality since there wasn’t much more I could do in this department! We had a lovely day walking around a farmer’s market with our coffees, trying persimmon for the first time and attempting to explain what we did for a living. We got a little lost in the woods on a long hike and had sushi for lunch afterwards, a first for me, though I ordered the only baked and cheese-covered item on the menu.

On our second date to the California Academy of Sciences I wore jeans and a blouse with hearts, a subliminal message perhaps. We saw reindeer and butterflies, and he put his arms around me on the windy sidewalk, laughing while waiting for our millionth Uber. We ate tapas and took in a stand up comedy show, where we were skewered most of the night (mostly him) for sitting front and center. He took it in stride and earned my respect. We rode the train together for a while, not wanting the night to end, least of all not in public in front of strangers on a train. His stop arrived too quickly and he abruptly jumped off, giving me a very sudden peck on the lips. He followed up later to say that the kiss was “weak sauce” and he would make up for it next time.

By the third date Casey had stepped up his game and was wearing a purple button down and a tie. It was supposed to take place on New Year’s Eve but he came down with a stomach bug and we rainchecked for later in January. I had carefully selected a funky new currant colored top and a gold and rhinestone circle-shaped geometric statement necklace, which I was determined still to wear, damnit. We had a lovely dinner at Skates On the Bay, and in the downpour outside under my green plastic umbrella we rectified the previous weak sauce kiss.

Thinking back on what we wore helps me relive the feel of those ephemeral moments, the increasing swell and stakes. Little markers to help me tap into the back and forth, the magnetic energy exchange. Out for a movie on date four, Casey broke out polished black loafers with dark jeans and a sweater and I was suitably impressed. It somehow conveyed to me that he Got it, understood how to show up and navigate our tender new waters with aplomb. We had the first of the “what are you looking for” conversations that night and began real talk about where life had respectively carried us, to arrive here and now at this present moment.

For date five I was ecstatic when he arrived with a colorful, Marimekko-inspired bunch of flowers, that we unfortunately had to give away to our dinner party hosts. I wore a short black A-line dress with a v-neck and flecks of color throughout the design, and he had on a striped wool sweater in the vein of Mark Cohen’s character from Rent and light khakis. After dinner we retired to the living room around a piano and sang for hours with friends, the air vibrating with magic.

That is the last I remember of what we wore. By now we were both all in, and it was time to make room for the new adventures that lay ahead. What we wore became less important to how we were, together.


Dang I am behind on posting! I have been posting to my Facebook page: but I really need to catch up here. So with that in mind here are my latest winter-spring wears! During my monthlong travels in January and February I picked up a couple new outfits in Boston- it was so fun to shop with my dear old friend Trianis from college, and we happened upon a wicked Anthro sale that we couldn't pass up! Also... I cut my hair even shorter! Laugh In the spirit of lightening the load overall the hair had to go too. Shortest it's even been and I'm honestly loving it!




fall fashion.

Falling into fall fashion... and massive closet cleaning! The positive effects of working through the Life Changing Magic book are coming to fruition, having reduced my closet by 30-35% (wheew!), making room for the things I really love to jump out at me. It truly is a joy!

Top left 2 photos are dress clothing swap scores (2 dresses, burgundy belt and pink heels- ow though, heels getting re-donated Happy) which was an incredibly fun event I was pushing to get the closet sort done by, and the beginnings of sweater weather... I also scored this amazing jean jacket in the trading process, something I've needed since letting go of my J. Crew one from high school a while back!


clothes hoarding.

So I realized through this process that low and behold, I am a clothes hoarder. Happy I guess that shouldn't come as a surprise... but it did somehow, to realize my habits. I collect things, not to wear necessarily, but to have, so that I am "prepared"... but... you can only wear so many clothes at a time, in a week, in a month. And the fact is I just don't wear that much in that time and have way too much. It has made it hard for the things I love to really stand out.

For example, I adore cardigans, and have many on hand for temperature transitions. I spent hours finding the perfect one, fit, and bought it in 4 colors. I have had them for years now, hardly worn, and now they just don't really fit! So I bought something to covet and not to WEAR. Our bodies change over time and clothes aren't really meant to save forever and ever and to always be able to wear, at least not for me- I think that's a realization from this work. Instead they are meant to be worn and enjoyed, right now.

Another is that just because something fits and is comfortable (i.e. shoes), doesn't mean it is my style. Out went a bunch of brand name quality shoes that are both those things, yet I don't wear because they don't reflect who I am.

I need to think much more carefully when I bring something in, that's for sure. This is some of what went out in the clothing exchange and sold/donated, and there was more than pictured. All told I got rid of about 30% of my current wardrobe. It feels so much better already! I should have taken before/after photos.

Goodbye, extra small cardis. You are no longer for me, but that doesn't mean I can't look fabulous at my current stage in life! Now that I'm free of what no longer works, I can focus on what does and that feels awesome.


lists and notes, that's me!

I LOVE lists and list making. Been doing it all my life as far as I can remember. I have notebooks upon notebooks and piles of lists. In working on tidying up the clothing area this week, I came across this notebook- #nerdalert! I took the time to create all these labels and sections, in the hopes I could get a handle on my stock and help me know what to wear more easily. It makes me feel good to make these lists (and as I go through this process, I'm tempted to do it again!) but the thing is I don't look back at them... so they aren't a whole lot of help. Happy (This notebook had 2 entries, one from 2011- I have none of the clothes listed there now!, and early 2015).

I think what I probably need to do is a look book with Polaroid snapshots of my outfits in a visible place. I put things together when I'm organizing and have time to experiment, and want to remember to do certain things (none of which I can do when I'm in a hurry getting dressed daily).

I don't do so great with things tucked away in a drawer. It has taken me a while to learn this, first via a quiz in Real Simple magazine about left brained and right brained storage, and I'm totally a have-everything-out-on-display kind of person (with a flair for list making, which forays into left brain territory- I had 9 things right brained on quiz and 4 left- this also aligns with what I know about my MBTI Laugh). My Mom on the other hand, is totally a put-everything-away-in-a-drawer person. Once I figured this out it was easy to get my storage solutions and I love them all. See previous post on jewelry displays. So for now, I'm moving on from you outfit notebook, and saying thanks to you also, for helping me refine the best vehicle for my ideas!

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goodbye old friend.

Day 2 of the Life Changing Magic - I did a first pass through of my jewelry, and quickly (and surprisingly) was able to pick out things that no longer "sparked joy" for me and out they went. Couple more nooks and crannies and I'll be finished up with jewelry- I am very pleased with how much I am getting rid of! And more importantly, how appealing what I have remaining now feels.

I have been skipping around Kondo's order a tiny bit when things jump out at me, like my trusty old favorite gold Banana Republic sweater from fall 2001. They just don't make 'em like they used to- this thing was a workhorse! I got it in Austin, TX, and it seemed to shrink and grow right along with me, and somehow despite my contracting and expanding size, it always fit perfectly! Now finally, with holes in the armpits Laugh, it is sadly time to retire her. Thank you goldy, for the 14 good years you have served me so well- we have been together through a lot of important times. I have happy memories wearing you in TX, when I moved to NC, and at least 3 different jobs. I can only hope to find another even halfway like you one day. Happy (PS- Kondo does suggest thanking items for the role and purpose they have served in your life when you let something go).

RIP favorite gold sweater- some of the jewelry I parted with,
and my reorganized and paired down displays below!

life changing magic.

So I am working through the Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up book by Marie Kondo slowly- if you don't know this book, you definitely have been under a rock because I am under a rock and I have heard about this book a ton Happy. There's so much out there already about this, so I am not going to go into the details of her work and principles. Basically you gather all like items together in one place, hold each item (starting with clothes), and ask "Does this spark joy?". I've been on my purging/tidying journey for years now, going at a turtle's place, but making progress, and I know how good it feels. I also know I still have more to do.

First she has you set your intentions, thinking about what it will be like to live in a clutter free space, and to journal about it. Then, to examine WHY you want those things. It is very powerful actually, and essentially boils down to the desire to be happy, in all its forms.

With these clear intentions in mind, I lit a candle, said a little prayer, and started with off-season clothes last night, which was good timing bringing in fall/winter items from my other closet. I was surprised that even though I was able to let go of a number of things, I rediscovered how much I love hoodies! They had been crammed behind my door in a corner, where I couldn't see them. Bringing them out, holding them, and folding them in a prominent place made a big difference! I am keeping an open mind during this process, and this was just a fun realization I didn't expect.

I've always loved hoodies, they make me smile, remind me of my 90s grunge skater music scene roots, feel core to who I am, and given the size of my collection (at least 14, and I got rid of 2 Laugh) that should be obvious, but it wasn't until doing this. I kept the most of these of any category I worked through by far, almost all of them, which is where the surprise came in. They are a source of comfort and relaxation (and mostly blue and green, clear colors of calm for me- my bedroom is these colors), which leads to me feeling fun and like myself, they can be customized with patches, they are super flattering for my body type, open V at the neck, with generous covering at the waist, like a jacket, so no wonder I love them. Feels amazing that I never clearly identified this before, and I'm already grateful for this process and what it will continue to uncover.

The 20 year old (OMG) XL U of R Tennis sweatshirt I can't part with- that can be my 1 loungewear item Happy, the amazing heart on sleeve shirt I DID part with because it was stained, but cut out the wording for the scrapbook pile (brilliant), the off-season pile I'm working through- you never realize how much you have until it is heaped all in one place!!, and my hoodies that I'm keeping,
very happy in their new prominent location.

rule breakin'.

Recent outfits... and white jeans after Labor Day! It has been a quick and colorful summer! Many things I did not get to wear. My daily Tim Gunn calendar says I should get rid of the summer clothes I didn't wear... hmmm I will at least consider a few things Tim Happy

Also, holy hair growth! Chopping my hair has given it new life and it has been growing like a weed! Had to chop again yesterday.


throwback thursday.

Since it's Thursday, I thought I would share some vintage items I've worn this past week: blue skirt, in heavy rotation at the moment, amazing vintage geometric blouse borrowed from my sweet gal pal Allison, and The Cure tee shirt I've had since 7th grade... Laugh


business casual.

Good morning and happy Tuesday! Here's a look at my digs from last week. I was in a facilitator training program and had to look respectable most days- more exhausting than it looks! I have a closet full of "comfortable" heels etc., but you can bet they were kicked off at the end of each day!


out with the old!

So I chopped off my hair... I woke up one morning and it was just time! Funny enough I did it 5 years ago, and then 5 years ago before that, so maybe I have a 5 year itch Laugh It has taken some getting used to and is more maintenance than my long hair funny enough, which I could go a week without washing or doing much with, but I'm really enjoying having something different and lightening the load! What I wore the past two weeks:

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My incredibly talented friend and stylist Allison with the ponytail-
still looking into the best place to donate it!
I had a green shoe theme going this week Happy
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I have never worn shorts, even as a kid. They are just not my thing. When I lived in 110 degree plus Arizona in the middle of the summer, I wore my Levi's jeans and a tee shirt. ! I remember being so confused about all these half naked women running around on campus, with tiny short shorts with U of A or Wildcats on their butts... I came from the northeastern land of huge heavy knit sweaters, corduroys, socks, Birkenstocks, and clogs.

Some of it though, I realize, was due to not being especially fond of my legs. I have always had "thunder thighs", even as a small child. When I was very slender throughout my youth, my thighs were still there... and I remembered my goal of wanting to gain weight and "get a tan" so my legs weren't so white. The recent body positivity movement has influenced me for sure as I have seen curvy women of all sizes rocking their shorts, and I know something was blocking me from wearing shorts besides just not caring for them, in that I didn't feel I was built for them and was just embarrassed in a way to wear them.

It is true that my body is very well suited to skirts of all kinds and that shorts are harder for me. But all of a sudden, I was ready for shorts and I wanted to go out and get some. This is one of the pairs I got below that I have been slowly starting to wear around... a big step, and I feel great in them! My legs are far from perfect, but they get me around and are strong and stable. I am really happy that I am trying on another option and not limiting myself!

Someone sent me this one the other day and I always liked it when I saw it around- what is this business about Mother Teresa not being good after all?! Sad Regardless, the sentiment is there of focusing on the good work of life and not little body idiosyncrasies.

fashion icon: Carly Simon.

Can we talk about outfit perfection here for Carly Simon's album cover No Secrets? My color palette and 70's vibe to a T... down to the blue suede clogs!

Some more shots in the hat... I love her so!

clothes closets and fridge behavior?

My clothes closets are full in the same way that people who feel most comfortable having an overstocked kitchen fridges and cupboards are full. I have way more than I actually wear, and I feel comforted knowing I have many GOOD options on any given day for any situation. I don’t have the same need for my fridge and cupboards to be jam packed, although I do dislike having no food at all... Happy

It took me sitting in front of my closets on my trunk at the end of my bed frantically writing another entry before it left my brain to realize this fact about myself! It gave me a different perspective and I was able to look at volume and see what I have from a different angle.

Its time to work on that "highly edited" closet concept and at least take a few baby steps towards it by moving things out that I don't feel utterly fantastic in.

2014: a year of style!

What I wore this year...

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meeting the birth fam!

What do you wear to meet your birth family for the first time? This is pretty much the first question that popped into my head once I knew I was going to attend my new birth cousin Brian and his fiancé Becca's wedding in Connecticut in October! OMG! Meeting 160 new people at this event!

Even more importantly, I will be meeting almost the entire birth family, including 12 cousins, 2 aunts, 1 uncle, and birth mother in Vermont in the days before and after the wedding. They are having a welcome party for me when I first arrive, and so that is the first outfit to plan... then there is the rehearsal dinner outfit... I have been working to determine all these outfits down to the exact accessories, and only once I got them covered have I been able to breathe a little easier! I keep saying to people how funny it is that I'm so hyperfocused on what to wear, but, it's such a huge deal, and these feel like some important first impressions! I don't think I've ever been this obsessed!

Only down side is that both dresses require help zipping them up! They both fit perfectly but it is an inconvenience to say the least Happy

Welcome party outfit
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At welcome party with my sweet cousin Milo!

Rehearsal dinner outfit - I loved the vintage retro feel of the silk dress with the graphic orange flowers, and the giant pearl baubles tied on with a satin ribbon. Also, my green patent leather clutch!

Meeting my new cousins at rehearsal dinner Happy

I didn't have a before pic of wedding outfit... I wore a floor length red skirt, and this bright magenta/purple top, with a red belt and colorful chunky necklace. I wanted to feel completely myself and comfortable for the big day, and think I nailed it!

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apple shirt.

My Momma and I: twinsies!
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Love it with my stretchy navy capris and blue suede shoes!
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werkin' it.

We just wrapped our biggest week long series of events to date at work, and it culminated in an evening graduation event that I spent a year planning. I got to wear the old LBD for a second time, and paired it with this scarf, which has a couple of our program colors in it, teal and green. You better believe I was happy to put my feet up at the end of a very successful evening!

Week at a glance, from low to high glam

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Graduation chic!
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Grammy, my style icon.

My Gram has always loved fashion, shoes, bags, and jewelry, and her and I certainly share this love (unlike my Mom! Happy). We have a lot of fun making a fuss over these things. Recently I had a couple sessions with her trying on some new clothes and going through her old jewelry...

Quelle heure est-il? Grammy's watch collection over the years- she got many of them from her special friend Pete.

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Isn't she the cutest? None of her clothes fit her, so I got her some new digs... she LOVED doing a fashion show for us!
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We went through her extensive jewelry collection, and had a blast trying everything on and looking through all the gems! Even Marshall helped Happy I now have many new hand-me-downs!

Grammy admiring my new purse from my friend Debra

San Fran vintage style.

Just got back from an inspiring trip to the Bay area, my favorite, and couldn't let a trip pass me by without a little style digging while there... I had some amazing vintage Levi's finds in the Mission district by the pound... all high waisted in their 70's glory! My body was so meant to thrive in another decade Happy When I reside somewhere with less amazing wardrobe options, it's so easy for me to slip into dressing like an Old Navy drone... no offense ON because I do find many cute things there... but I when I visit places like SF, I remember how I really want to represent my best self via what I wear, and know I need to work harder to cultivate that, even if it means shopping only when traveling!

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Home road tripping in NC to the beach, raring to go in said Levi's, favorite tree necklace, and Chuck Taylor's, bringing back my Cali love memorabilia from days gone by Happy

My friend Ry guy and I in a before and after- us on the left, 18 years ago... wow Happy (I remember those suede J.Crew maryjanes!) and on the right, San Francisco, August 2014

Birk chic!

I played tennis after many years of not playing, and needless to say I overdid it, fell on the clay (played for 4 hours!!), then fell again the next day in my platform sandals walking on the sidewalk in my neighborhood and messed up my ankle. Major bummer, because I am so psyched about playing tennis again!

You realize very quickly when you sprain your ankle that you own absolutely no practical, comfortable shoes except sneakers... and I have a big trip coming up and need something walkable. So, I have jumped on the Birk trend! This is my very first pair of Birks, if you can believe it! (I had a fake pair in college but that doesn't count). I have been wearing these every single day, with my sexy compression stocking... :O I got the cutest, most versatile pair I could find and I am very pleased.

They also happen to be very in vogue right now with all the fashionistas...

I'm sure I will get another bright colored pair sometime to add to the comfort collection!

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au natural.

Doing a little experiment this week. I have tinted my eyelashes and eyebrows with henna dye for 15 + years now for two reasons:

1) Because I was told I had really long lashes but no one could see them
2) Because when I'm bare faced liked this, I get lots of "you look tired" comments, from coworkers, friends, family etc.

Fair haired models can pull it off in close up photos, but it seems much harder in real life to look striking and not "tired" with light features. Going to give it a try this week and see how it goes!

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70's green bell bottoms.

Look at my Godmother and Godsister in the late 70s... Wow do I love those green bell bottoms! Wish she still had them Happy They are so my color!

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tattoo style.

I got my first ever tattoo last week in Dallas, TX. It is something I've thought about for 20 years... I wrote about it, shared about it, and suddenly it was the right time for this rite of passage. I knew I wanted a retro, round, very vibrant and colorful design to match my aesthetic... this is a piece of art that I will wear forever and it had to be right on! I traveled to see friends and work with an artist with 20 years of experience that I trusted. It hurt like hell, and the process was more complicated than I realized, but I'm so happy with the result!

Jeff getting set up
OMG! I have a tattoo!!!
While I pulled from lots of things, this design came the closest to articulating what I wanted:
With my designer YoungDoo, who helped map out my vision!
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I visited my dear friends in Dallas this weekend, my first time really experiencing the big city, and had a blast. Went to a swanky holiday party, out on the town, and ate some delicious food. The weekend called for a bit more upscale dressing than bumming around Greensboro, and I was up for the challenge. This is my very first LBD! The fit is not bad for having zero time for alterations. It has a sexy gold zipper all the way up the back too! I am wearing my Grandma's beautiful chartreuse pearls and clip on earrings Happy I love this rusty red blazer as well - it needs to come out to play more!

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holiday partyin'

What I wore to my work holiday party- a semi LBD, wool with flecks of all colors ... love this dress and feel so grown up in it, but its pretty hot and I've only worn it a couple times!

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Had a great birthday, wearing my new Free People vegan pleather mini skirt, sparkly crop top from thrift store, tights, my beautiful bordeaux Frye boots, copper circle necklace, and a white tee at one point in the day too Happy

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color girl.

In the spirit of expanding on the rainbow theme, another reason I love it so is because I love color.

Over the past few years my appreciation of color, style and aesthetics, and sharing this with the world through what I wear has blossomed, and it has become something easy and enjoyable for me to do. I am a novice now, but I'm sure I'll get more polished - in the meantime, it's just fun! A few recent fall outfits:


back to school.

Came across this gem, and in honor of back to school, I post it with great nostalgia of this time... Picture it, Sicily, 1914... wait. Upstate NY, the country, first day of 6th grade. I had gone to New York City over the summer and HAD TO HAVE the latest fashion ensemble, which was this tubular situation you see below.... each piece was sold separately, even the hair bow, and I know it was not cheap, all told. Leggings, shirt dress, waist tube, neck tube, hair tube. Added my own orange nylon knee highs and black slip on dance shoes Laugh Topped it off with a fresh perm and curled bangs. I swore to my Mom I would wear it, of course.

My friend Molly went with the preppy look, peg legged rolled Guess? jeans, huge rugby shirt and loafers. And, oh yes, scrunchy white socks.

I took the road less traveled by alright... and wore this outfit exactly once. Happy I'm happy it gets to live again in retrospect!

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housewarming party.

I had a housewarming party this month to commemorate all the hard work I've been doing in my house... the theme colors were red, orange, and yellow.

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I wore a tried and true old standby outfit, something that feels comfortable and completely Valeriffic: J.Crew yellow skirt I got for $6 at a thrift store, that I have worn for past 10 summers, and Abercrombie tank top, which I have also had for at least 10 years, another great thrift find! Topped it off with a bright handmade enamel orange and yellow ring from one of my trips to Colorado.

Had fun with the primary color theme!!

Group sing a long with my buddy Terri