Friday, February 10, 2012

She really is a funny girl

Hi! I'm in a very good mood today because I finally got some important details of my thesis ironed out and I finally, finally have an estimated ETA for the conclusion of the grad school phase of my life! This makes me very happy for many reasons, some of which you can probably guess if you've been a grad student. ;) I have a lot of work ahead of me, but I've got a really solid plan to accomplish it and I'm really excited for this glimpse of the "light at the end of the tunnel."

Here's a casual outfit that I wore a few weekends ago to see Beauty and the Beast. Belle is "my" princess and I've always related to her. My first memory of this movie is at one of my first sleepovers when I was about six, and I immediately knew that Belle was my kind of hero. I can so understand the feeling that you're meant for greater things but not knowing how to achieve them (and ending up spending a lot of time dreaming about achieving them). And growing up, I was always the "funny girl" (and by "funny" I mean "weird") who had "a dreamy, far-off look and her nose stuck in a book." I remember being baffled that someone so much like me could be the hero of a story. It's my second favorite Disney movie (favorite being The Lion King, but all Disney movies are my favorites), so I knew I had to see it in the theater again. My boyfriend is kind of awesome and not only took me to see it, but claims he enjoyed himself. Yeah, think I'll keep him.

Skirt: UO (for $5, sweet!)
Tee: Talbot's
Tights: DSW
Shoes: new favorites from Aerosoles
Necklace: Kohl's

(Are you surprised that I chose Belle as my princess for the upcoming Disney Princess Half Marathon? Nope? I didn't think so.)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Old items, new outfits

Every once in awhile, you come across a chance to own an older item you thought you'd missed out on. This happened to me last month when a super nice poster on the Effortless Anthropologie trade market was kind enough to sell me her J Crew Bow Skirt. I had seen this on some of my favorite bloggers and loved it, but I never thought I'd have the opportunity to own one. Thank you so much, Bonnie, for selling me this skirt! I love it (and my boyfriend gave it the stamp of approval, too).

Here's how I wore it on its first outing:

J Crew Bow Skirt (Thanks, Bonnie!)
Anthropologie Creative Outlet Tank
Cardigan: Target
Tights: gift from Mom
Shoes: Poetic License

(Sorry for the awful lighting of this photo. I took it during the harsh light of day and had to edit the heck out of it for you to even be able to see the colors of the clothes!)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Burnt Sienna

Good morning! I'm back again!

This dress is a relatively new ModCloth favorite from late 2011. When I got an email about a %-off promotion for vintagey items plus free shipping, I knew I had to pounce. So far I've really enjoyed wearing it! I don't own a dress in this color, and it satisfies my craving for comfortable and un-fussy yet cute and work appropriate dresses. I played it a little safe with green and brown in this outfit.

ModCloth Burnt Sienna Sweetheart Dress (currently out of stock, but sign up for notification here)
DSW shoes
Jessica Simpson tights
old Kohl's necklace

Saturday, February 4, 2012

I've been a bad girl.

Um. Hi.

I know it's been a ridiculous amount of time since I last posted here. A lot of factors contributed to me not posting, including being busy with life events (cough thesis proposal cough) and just not being all that happy with my outfits/pictures. I've also been pretty busy with friends/boyfriend, my dancing, and being totally consumed with excitement over the upcoming Hunger Games movie. I've actually been planning a Somewhat Serious Post here over the past week or two inspired by the thinky-thoughts I had when I read the Hunger Games trilogy, namely how I can reconcile my love of clothes and pretty things with the themes of the books. Don't get too scared; I'm not giving up fashion 'cause I read a book, and if I turned away from pretty clothes every time I read a book that bashes consumerism, I would have no clothes. But the focus on fashion in The Hunger Games has led me to think it'd be a logical tie-in with the focus of this blog, so look for that soon.

I've noticed that if I fall out of the habit of posting, it becomes even easier to not post. And then if a certain amount of time goes by, I'll feel odd coming back to posting, as if I've insulted all my readers with my absence and just continuing to hide would be less rude than being all "Um. Hi." But while I might not have the time or inclination to post every day, I do enjoy cataloging my outfits here and interacting with readers and having a record of what looks good and what doesn't. Thank you to everyone who kept me on their reader list -- I really don't mean to be away for these long stretches, and I'll try to do better in the future!

I actually have two outfits today. I got a pair of red pants for Christmas, which I've been wanting, and surprisingly they go with a lot. I put together two different looks and wanted to show you them together. Next on my list is to finally acquire some colored denim. Corduroy is fun for winter and early spring, but I'm going to need some other options with this crazy 'winter' we've been having lately. I'm not super happy with the quality of these photos, but I'm still learning how to use Photoshop.

First, casual dinner-slash-thesis-whinefest with boyfriend:

Pants: Macy's
Dress/tunic: JC Penny (old)
Cardigan: Target
Headband: Anthropologie
Shoes: DSW

Then, hardcore-lit-review-whinefest with my computer at home:

Pants: Macy's
Tee: Talbot's (another Christmas gift)
Necklace: gift from my sister from local Charleston shop
Rain boots: Kamik

I think I might have left the house that day. Maybe.

Even though I haven't been blogging, I do still have lots of old outfit pictures in my camera, so I really hope to start sharing those soon. What about you, lovely readers? How is life for you?

Friday, January 13, 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like... spring?

I am determined not to fall into post-fail, so here I am on this Friday morning, probably too sleepy to be posting, but doing so anyway.

I found this outfit in my backlogs from back in 2011. I don't know why I neglected to post it then; maybe it just wasn't exciting enough for you guys back then? I think more likely I just forgot, but here it is. I thought the color scheme was overly springy for this time of year, but our weather's been crazy warm for January, so I guess it fits. I'm really looking forward to spring weather. I'm still holding out hope that we get one decent snow this year (probably not happening), but I welcome the return of longer days, not being in the dark on the way home from work, and being slightly more socially acceptable in my obsession with color.

Anthropologie Field Skirt
J Crew warehouse cardigan
old, old cami
Macy's tights
DSW shoes

Monday, January 9, 2012

Kids' shoes and open back tops? Adventures in insanity.

Good evening! I'm sure you're all dying to know what I wore on my Anthro shopping trip, so here it is:

Anthropologie Sweater Collective Tunic
Leggings: Christmas present
Headband: Christmas present from my awesome college roommate, Kendall
Shoes: Kids' boots!

I got these boots for Christmas, and they're yet another Cupcake shoe that I totally love. Yep, they're for little girls. Nope, I don't care. This brand runs VERY large in my opinion, and I usually wear a 4 or a 5 when in actuality I'm a true 6-6.5 in shoes. So, if you have smallish feet, you may be able to snag yourself a cute pair of cheap shoes. I really wanted black boots, and I actually liked these better than the grown-up (i.e.: More expensive!) options I tried. They're pretty "tough" for a little girl shoe, and the height is just right for me. Also, they're super comfortable. I highly recommend this brand for those on the small end of the shoe spectrum! Also, the name is adorable.

Also, guys, help. This beauty is calling my name:

Draped Snail Tank, $128

Am I crazy for liking this? It's neon pink, but more importantly, the back is wide open! Why, Katie? Why?

Because I can see myself strolling happily and freely along the beaches of Charleston with this awesome tank flowing behind me and showing off my inevitable speedo stripes swim team tan, that's why.

Oh man, I will have to do some thinking about this one. The price is cry-worthy, but I think a lot of people will be deterred by the open back. I have high hopes for making this mine on sale around the time it's actually appropriate to wear it. What do you think of this open-back thing? Too crazy, or perfect for my favorite beach town?

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Reviews! Rodna and etc! (And a bit of a desperate APB)

Hello! I'm here to post a couple of Anthro reviews in honor of last week's sale. After a lot of searching, it seems I'm just not meant to have the Dulcie Dress, sob. If any of you happen to see one in an XS, if you could put it on hold for Katie and email me at Azelma (dot) Roark (at) Gmail (dot) com, I would be ever so grateful. I love the black the most but would take either color. A few awesome ladies gave me some tips, but unfortunately I didn't end up finding one. There seem to be a bunch of other sizes left, but XS is really hard to find for whatever reason, and I really need that size. Cry. If you see one, let me know!

With that said, I'm attempting to drown my sorrows in reviews to hopefully find another dress to love. My Christmas giftcard needs a-spendin', so read on to give your opinion on how I should spend it!

Wrapped Ruched Tee, $58 and unknown Moth skirt, $50
Okay, so I just picked up this tee to try on with the skirt (I'm pretty sure this is the name of it, though mine was a teal color that isn't listed on the website -- please advise if you know the real name!). It was a pretty big fail, as you can see. The fit was okay in the arms, but everywhere else was way too big, especially the length. This is a soft, comfy top that might look great on taller ladies, but IMO it is not for petites. Big pass.

I picked up the skirt because I'd been looking for more work-appropriate skirts in different color schemes. My store only had smalls and up, and as you can see, it was too big. I did like the shape, and it's soft and comfortable. But although I can see this skirt going well with a lot of different colors, the color itself wasn't too flattering on me. Overall, I liked this skirt, but not enough to try and track down an XS. At $50, it's too expensive for what it is. Maybe at another price cut. (What is the name of this one? Anybody?)

Rodna Halter Dress, now $99
Okay, readers, this is where I'm really going to need your help. I tried this dress on fully expecting it to overwhelm my small frame, but now that I'm looking at the pictures, I ... kind of want it. This is a size 2 because my store didn't have a 0, and as you can see it's a little big, especially at the chest. I would need to track down a 0 if I wanted it, and I don't imagine this dress will hang around long in my size, so I need to decide soon. It's a really heavy corduroy (I was worried it was going to break the hanger!) and hits at about my shin, which isn't a length I normally go for, but I didn't mind it IRL. What do you guys think? Is it too fancy for regular wear? Does it work on me, or is it too overwhelming? I'm on the fence and need to make a decision ASAP!

Raspberry Jacquard Dress, $168
I liked this dress more in person than I'm liking it in the photos. This is a size 2 and too big, and I imagine it'd look better in a 0. I loved the color, the swingy skirt, and the adorable dot pattern. The neckline might be more flattering in the right size. I'm not sold on this just yet, but it would be a really cute Valentine's Day dress. Also, um, the back is really, really hard to fasten. Like, really. I almost had to break down and call the SA for help. I'm not sure how this would work for me when I don't have someone around to help me (hey, boyfriend? ;)). The price is way too high for me right now, but I'll evaluate it again on sale.

After a somewhat disappointing trip to Anthro where everything was too big, I did end up taking home this cutie:

Centerpiece Apron
So adorable! I've been really getting into cooking lately, and I do a fair amount of entertaining in which I don't want to ruin my nice clothes. So I really needed an apron, and this was my favorite of the ones I saw at Anthro. I promised myself that I could get an apron as a reward for keeping my kitchen clean and cooking more, and with my gift card, this was an easy choice.

What do you guys think? What's the verdict on the Rodna? Got any other cute Anthro dresses to suggest for my giftcard extravaganza? Anybody know where all the XS Dulcies are hiding? ;)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Photoshop Playtime

Bonjour! It's been a rough week back at work for me after getting way too used to spending my days covered in purring cats. I got home yesterday, put on a bathrobe, and collapsed for three hours. Then I woke up, watched a few wedding shows, and collapsed again for nine hours. I'm still a little sleepy this morning, but I've got a dance class in forty-five minutes, so I need to wake up, pronto. Ergo, I'm doing a quick blog post to at least get my brain warm.

I wore this outfit last weekend to go ice skating with my boyfriend. Of course, I haven't been ice skating since I was about nine, and the "ice skating = cold" connection didn't click in my head until I was about to walk out the door. I grabbed a hoodie (the Superfluous Bellows hoodie, to be precise, so imagine it in the picture) and was a little more weather-appropriate, although I still had to steal my boyfriend's jacket. Oops.

My thought process was something like "ice skating = short, flowy skirt and leggings = totally adorable figure skater." I'm not sure how well that translated, but look! I have figured out how to play with Photoshop! I was reading over Tara's photography tips and got inspired, so I resolved to try and make my pictures a little nicer. I think I see an improvement, although I obviously have a lot to learn. My computer somehow had Photoshop installed when I bought it (thanks, school?), and though I've never used it before, I'm going to have fun with this. Oh yes. What do you think?

Top: From Skydiving!
Skirt: Urban Outfitters
Leggings: Macy's
Boots: More kids' shoes from Rackroom! (Will write about these later.)
Bracelet: Taylor Swift concert
Imaginary Superfluous Bellows Hoodie from Anthro is Imaginary

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Cozy sick day (OOTD)

Good afternoon! Here we have yet another blast from the past outfit. I wore this when I was sick a couple of weeks ago and just wanted to be comfortable. This sweater always makes me feel cozy, and even though it's a little big, I find it oddly comforting. Being a little big makes it perfect for layering on cold days, and I was happy with how the pop of color looked underneath it. Not too bad for a sick day, IMO.

Anthropologie Laced Dots Sweater
Talbot's tee
Pants stolen from sister. Sorry, Ria. (Sorry I'm not sorry. ;))

Also, muahaha! I have officially made four posts and scheduled them for this week, so you guys will not be deprived of outfits even if I get lazy. And with that said, hello from past!Katie.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Oldie but Goodie (OOTD)

Hi again!

When I saw the Tempting Trellis Cardigan in 2009, it was love at first sight. When I saw Maria make the connection to Romanticism on her blog, I knew it had to be mine. This was one of those "pains me to admit that I paid full price" purchases because I try really, really hard to never pay full price even if I can afford it -- and $100 for a cardigan is out of my personal realm of reasonable. But I had a little extra money at the time, and I wanted it so badly, so I had Anthro track down one of the last XSs available. It did eventually go on sale, and if luck was on my side I might have been able to find my size, but I loved it too much to risk it.

So, there you have it. Sometimes even thrifty Katie breaks down and pays full price for something. In this case, it was worth it, as I still absolutely love this cardigan. It's one of the softest tops I own, and I love how the rainbow of flowers makes it work with almost any colors. It never occurred to me to wear it on its own, but as a casual weekend look, I think it worked.

Anthropologie Tempting Trellis Cardigan
Urban Outfitters skirt
Macy's tights
Necklace from my work hospital
You can't see them, but the shoes are Softwalk mary janes

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Shades of Blue (OOTD)

And my outfit backlog continues! Say hello once again to my out of date Christmas lights. I fear that you'll be seeing them a few more times in 2012.

I was pleased to find that this cardigan from my most recent JCrew warehouse excursion almost exactly matches my elephant socks that I got from Anthro a couple years ago. I got the idea to wear the socks with the Manisa Dress from a review on Anthro's site, and it's been a go-to outfit for me ever since. Also, holy mackerel, my hair was behaving in these pictures. I need to remember what I did to make it so, but alas I cannot. This is what I get for waiting so long to post photos.

Anthropologie Manisa Dress, Trunks and Tails Socks
DSW shoes
JCrew warehouse cardigan (I think it's a Jackie?)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Your regularly-scheduled posting: ModCloth review and OOTD

My oh my, it's been awhile since I've done a normal OOTD post, hasn't it?

I'm having the laziest (and most awesome) day ever today sitting at home being cuddled by cats and watching a marathon of Sister Wives (don't judge me). In a little while, I'm going to attempt to drag my butt out of bed for a run and then to the mall to check out Anthro. My Christmas gift card is burning a hole in my pocket, people!

But today, I'm not going to post about Anthro. Today is a ModCloth post. I got an email about two weeks ago informing me that ModCloth was having a temporary sale on some of their most awesome vintage-y (read: Katie's favorite) items, so of course I went to their site to check it out and procrastinate. (You didn't hear that last thing.) Then I noticed that the Burnt Sienna Sweetheart Dress that I'd had my eye on a few months ago was among the sale offerings. Then I noticed that ModCloth was offering free shipping with no minimum. Can you guess what happened next? Hello, new dress, get in my shopping cart.

For a mere $30 on sale, this is a great dress. It's back to full price now, but honestly I think it's worth it now that I own it. The fabric is rayon and a bit wrinkly, but it's very comfortable, and for the price the quality is awesome. I love the color and the design. IMO it's more flattering once you put it on than it is in the picture online. I ordered a small, which is TTS to a little big. The dress is on the short side, though, so if you're taller than me I would not size down for the length. I didn't find it too short (I'm wearing ~3 inch heels in these photos), but if I were even a couple inches taller, I think it might be. My only quibble is that the top is a little loose on me, and when I bend over, it tends to become immodest no matter how tightly I tie it. You may want to be mindful of this, especially if you're petite.

Overall I highly recommend this dress and have already worn it three times. Here's a recent OOTD! Note the Christmas lights -- yeah, you'll be seeing those a lot in my old photos. I regret nothing.

Dress: ModCloth (Clicky!)
Tights: Macy's
Shoes: b.o.c.
Bracelet: Taylor Swift concert (get used to this accessory, haha)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Year in Review: Top 11 Outfits of 2011 (+ bonus NYE outfit!)

Okay everybody, I'm really sorry that I've been MIA over the holidays. Like a few other bloggers, I took a little holiday break, but I've got several old outfits that I need to post, and hopefully I'll be back to your regularly-scheduled posting now. Also, yaysauce: I have 93 followers! There will so be a giveaway if I get to 100. :D

With that, I wanted to take a look back at some of my favorite outfits of 2011. I always love these posts from other bloggers, so I thought I'd do one, too. I think I learned a lot about style and how to shop for/wear clothes in 2011, and I had fun looking through my outfit archives to see how my style has evolved. I hope you enjoy a trip down sartorial memory lane with me!

In no particular order:

And finally, here's my outfit from last night, also known as the last outfit of 2011 and the first of 2012. This is also my boyfriend's first attempt at blog photographer. And since Emma matches my dress, we couldn't resist leaving her in the picture.

2011 was a great year for me, both style-wise and on a personal level. I conquered fears, jumped out of planes, fought my anxiety, became more in touch with myself, and met an amazing guy. Oh, and I wore a lot of pretty clothes, as you can see above. In the new year, I want to pretty much stick to my same fashion policies I had in 2011: Only buying what I really love, what is a great deal, and what I can afford.

Do you have any fashion resolutions for 2012? (Or regular resolutions, since, as we all know, life is all about clothes -- oops.) My other not-related-to-clothes resolution is to become more flexible. I can't touch my toes, and that is sad! I think it will really help my running and my dancing -- plus it's a pretty easy resolution, so I'm more likely to actually do it.

I don't know where 2012 will take me, but I have a feeling it will be to good places. Finally, I want to thank all my readers for sticking with my blog through the ups and downs of 2011. Whether you've been here from the beginning or we just found each other, I'm so glad you're here, and I hope to have many more adventures in fashion with you.

Here's to another year of insanity: