10-Item Summer 2017 Wardrobe: Stripes & Coral

Woo! I finally have all the pics together for my 10-Item Summer Wardrobe (such as they are), and I am psyched to share this–and to wear this! (Hey, I’m a poet and I didn’t know it). As longtime readers know, I adopted the capsule wardrobe approach after reading Jennifer L. Scott’s Madame Chic books (be sure to check out her blog, The Daily Connoisseur, as well). The premise: collect 10 “core items” that either go together and complement each other, then augment it with “extras” such as T-shirts, outerwear, evening wear, etc.

Unfortunately, due to the light and the different times I took these photos, the colors aren’t just right (and my clothes look a little wrinkly–that’s totally my fault). But I swear these all go together, and I’m pretty happy!

Another note: you may notice a couple returns from a few years ago. While I do practice the 10-item wardrobe, I don’t always purge everything I’m not wearing in a particular season. For example, right after I had Sarah and I was in super-breastfeeding mode, I went down a size, and some of my shorts were too big. I saved them just in case, and guess what–I’m glad I did. Since most of last year’s summer wardrobe just plain wore out (after many years of service), I was glad I kept some pieces in reserve!

But without further ado, let’s . . . a-do this! (™ Hub Hubbard.)

1_10ItemS17

Pale pink Merona cotton sweater. I got this for free at my friend Melissa’s Naked Lady party and built a lot of this wardrobe around it! Love it, and it pairs well with coral and red.

10 item wardrobe

Thread & Supply blue “menswear” shirt.

2_10ItemS17

You think you’ve seen this shirt a million times, but guess what: it’s a new J Crew Factory striped boatneck shirt! After many years, I realized the underarms of my old one . . . turned black. Fortunately I was literally at J Crew Factory when I discovered this.

3_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory sunwashed slim chino. My husband got me these for Mother’s Day, and I love them. I would never have picked them, because they get dirty as f*ck every time I wear them, but they wash well and are more comfortable in the heat that jeans.

4_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory coral seersucker shorts. These are from at least four years ago!

6_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory 5″ chino shorts in aqua. These are kind of like a chambray? Very old. 

7_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory striped daybreak dress. I love this because it looks structured, but it’s made of stretch material. It looks like they’re out of this particular stripe, sad.

8_10ItemS17

LOFT striped dress. This dress is ancient (at least five years) and I think it was actually supposed to be a swimsuit coverup? It’s my favorite summer dress: it’s cute and doesn’t hug my body.

10-Item Wardrobe

Floral dress, made by me maybe five or six years ago? Pattern by Amy Butler.

So there are my 10 pieces! On to the extras: T-shirts!

10-Item Wardrobe

J Crew Factory “fruit salad” T-shirt. I’ve had this for years and it’s a little too sheer now, so I wear a camisole under it.

X1_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory collector T-shirt–another gift from my husband. Looks like it’s out of stock online.

X2_10ItemS17

J Crew studio T-shirt. A perfect basic!

X3_10ItemS17

J Crew Factory perfect fit shell. These are my new favorites–they really do fit perfectly, and they’re a little more polished than a tank top.

FullSizeRender 27

J Crew Factory striped boatneck short-sleeved T-shirt. I don’t think they have this on the site anymore (I picked it up last year) and it’s too bad, it wears well like the long-sleeved one!

X4_10ItemS17

Novelty shirts! My sister Jessica gave me the Star Wars shirt, and I picked up the tank visiting Carmel this spring for a family reunion. Guest starring my toes.

Ahhh. I love using the 10-item wardrobe because it makes everything easier. My drawers are organized, I can see all my clothes, and it makes laundry a snap (and necessary). It’s also been really interesting to see which items hold up well (the dress I made, certain J Crew items) and which did not (most T-shirts).

What do you think? Is anyone else out there doing this? Post below!

Advertisements
10 item wardrobe star wars murder she wrote

10-Item Winter 2017 Wardrobe: Murder!

Hey guys! I’ve finally put together my 10-item wardrobe for this winter, yay! It took me a little longer than I planned to put this post together because one, I was waiting on a black cardigan from ThredUp, and two, I had to make sure my clothes were clean before I took pictures. Ha.

So if you’ve read my blog in the past, you know I have a big thing for capsule wardrobes–I learned about the 10-item wardrobe from writer Jennifer L. Scott‘s Madame Chic books. Basically, you want to put together 10 “core” pieces that go well together: pants, dresses, blouses, sweaters, etc. Then you round it out with extras like t-shirts (I admit I have a lot of t-shirts right now, but when you see them you’ll understand why). The 10-item wardrobe does not include underwear, outerwear, or evening wear.

I’ve always wanted the perfect, packable wardrobe–something I could throw in a small suitcase and travel the world in, looking good (or at least acceptable) everywhere I go. This is seriously it. I take my 10-item wardrobe with me to Massachusetts every spring break to visit my husband’s family. It takes less than five minutes to pack and I’m good to go. And in my everyday life, it takes me like three minutes to get dressed. It’s awesome and I love it. So let’s look at the clothes!

img_0802

Plaid blouse by Rail.

This is a new purchase this year–I found it while shopping with my Mom. I love this shirt–it’s so soft and cozy, but it’s nice enough to go out to dinner.

10-Item Wardrobe

J. Crew Factory chambray shirt.

This shirt has been part of almost every one of my 10-item wardrobes from the very start (I did take it out of rotation to give it a rest). It’s still holding up well!

10-item wardrobe jeans

Citizens of Humanity “Sculpt – Rocket” high rise skinny jeans in Waverly.

I admit–my jeans are the most expensive part of my wardrobe. However, I wear them multiple times per week, so I really need high-quality jeans that will hold up. My last pair of Citizens of Humanity jeans lasted almost three years, so I’m doing my best to make sure these follow suit. They’re never going in the dryer! Anyway, it took me a moment to deal with the fact that these jeans go up to my waist–I’ve been wearing low-rise jeans for the past 15 years and I was a little worried this meant that I was Giving. Up. But they are insanely flattering, and it’s kind of nice to be able to sit without worrying that I’m flashing anyone. Bah, I have given up, noooooo!

10 item wardrobe jeans

Citizens of Humanity “Rocket – Sculpt” high rise skinny jeans in black.

Hey, when I find something that works I buy it in a second color. Citizens of Humanity jeans are also super comfy, which is a major plus, since I’m often sitting/squatting on the floor with my toddler.

10 item wardrobe Kenneth Cole black leggings

Kenneth Cole black leggings.

These are actually some leggings my Mom gave me for Christmas six or seven years ago that I rarely wore, but couldn’t bear to part with. I grew up in the ’80s, so I wore leggings the first time around, plus I kind of hate the leggings as pants trend. However. These are some good-looking leggings, plus I’ve started going to the gym on a regular basis. Paired with a t-shirt (see below) and my ancient sports bra from college (also rarely worn), I’ve got a workout outfit.

10 item wardrobe

Spider-Man sweatshirt, Forever 21.

This Spider-Man sweatshirt is also a long-time member of my various 10-item wardrobes, and it’s also part of my workout ensemble. I look really athletic and serious about fitness in it. Ha. I love this sweatshirt and will never part with it, neveeerrrrrr!

10 item wardrobe

Fisherman’s sweater, vintage.

I love this sweater, but I was thisclose to dropping it from my 10-item wardrobe. It’s so heavy and thick, but . . . it’s so heavy and thick! I don’t actually need a big wool sweater most of the time (I run hot), plus it’s a little uncomfortable under my trench coat. However! It is so pretty, and this winter has been a little colder than usual. I’ve been using it as a coat when it’s not raining.

10 item wardrobe black sweater H&M

H&M black cardigan with lace detail.

Because my fisherman’s sweater is so heavy, I felt like I needed a lighter cardigan to throw over my (many) t-shirts. But since I had already spent my Christmas and birthday money on things like jeans (see above), I didn’t want to spend a lot. I found this sweater on ThredUp, a site that sells used clothing online, for about $11. It arrived in like-new condition, and it works well with the rest of my wardrobe! I actually couldn’t tell it had lace on it when I bought it (black is hard to photograph), but I’m glad it does–it’s something I wouldn’t usually choose, and it adds a little extra interest to my wardrobe.

img_0804

Blue “chambray” dress, Twill.

I picked up this dress from Twill, a local boutique that sells cute, reasonably priced clothes. It fits really nicely and is comfortable–a big plus for me. I don’t generally wear a lot of dresses during the day in the winter, so I’ll pair this with tights or leggings.

10 item wardrobe topshop wrap dress

Topshop Star Plissé wrap dress.

This dress is awesome and insanely flattering. I wore it out for the first time this past weekend to the Image Comics welcome/anniversary party and I got a lot of compliments.

And now, the extras–aka I got a lot of cool t-shirts for my birthday and Christmas this year!

10 item wardrobe Madewell

Madewell t-shirts, white and gray.

These are great, basic t-shirts.

10 item wardrobe splendid

Splendid ringer t-shirt.

Geez! All my t-shirts look wrinkly but I am not ironing them, not even for you, dear reader. The fabric of this ringer tee is soft and thick–I love it.

10 item wardrobe

J. Crew Factory long-sleeved striped boatneck t-shirts.

Again, these are long-time loves of mine–they are the best! The navy-striped one is at least four years old and it looks great (I’m wearing it right now). I hang these to dry as well. You can buy them here!

10 item wardrobe star wars murder she wrote

Star Wars and Murder, She Wrote t-shirts.

My friends are the best, they buy me rad t-shirts that make me happy.

Phew! So here it is! I think this is my best 10-item wardrobe yet–I like how I can literally do anything from work out at the gym to go out at night in it, yet pretty much all the pieces go together nicely. It helps that I pretty much stick to neutrals, stripes, and nerd.

Have any of you tried out the capsule wardrobe? What do you think? Post below!

My Summer 2016 10-Item Wardrobe

Yes! I am so excited to write this post. I love everything about the 10-item wardrobe idea, which I first read about in Jennifer L. Scott’s Madame Chic books. Having a simplified capsule wardrobe makes my life much easier: I can close all my drawers, and getting dressed takes no time. But also, I feel like it’s made me more stylish. Having to pare down my wardrobe makes me focus on what I actually wear every day, which are usually the items I feel best in.

So when the weather started getting warmer, I started by bringing out and evaluating my summer 2015 10-item wardrobe. While I kept a lot of it, some pieces that were a few years old needed to be retired and replaced.

I love this year’s wardrobe! The color scheme is red, white, and blue. I didn’t mean to be so patriotic: red is one of my favorite colors, and blue goes with everything. So let’s start with pieces that made the cut from last year:

10 item wardrobe

Fisherman’s sweater, vintage. This is from my fall/winter wardrobe. It’s warm but still looks great with summery clothes.

10-Item Wardrobe

Gap cropped white jeans.

10-Item Wardrobe

J. Crew Factory striped dress. I still love this piece, I’ve had it for four years!

10-Item Wardrobe

Floral dress, made by me about six years ago. Pattern by Amy Butler. This is a great any-occasion summer dress. The colors are so bright!

10-Item Wardrobe

J. Crew Factory chambray shirt. Another one I’ve had for four years!

And now (drumroll please): the four new additions for this year!

FullSizeRender 27

What’s this? My goodness, it’s the summery, short-sleeved cousin of my very favorite J. Crew shirt! I especially love the peacock blue and dark red together, it looks vintage.

FullSizeRender 25

Navy blue J. Crew Factory 5″ chino shorts. These are actually a late addition to last summer’s 10-item wardrobe. They’ve held up well!

FullSizeRender 23

J. Crew Factory striped chevron dress. This is the dress I blogged about (the one I was eyeing as an alternative to a $500 dress). I love this dress. It fits beautifully, it’s made beautifully (it’s lined, and they’ve matched the stripes really well), and it was only about $50.

Here’s the dress on (a little wrinkly–I was sitting in it)!

So those are my 10 core pieces. Here are some T-shirts (my extras) to round things out:

Summer just isn’t summer without Archie. I got this shirt from Archie Comics’ official Threadless store! The (wow, wrinkled) navy T-shirt, white and gray tees, and floral tank are all from (of course) J. Crew Factory. The floral, white, and gray tops are from last year.

So what do you think? I’m pairing everything with my brown Josef Seibel sandals and brown Ahnu sneakers, both of which are about two years old. I also have some five-year-old Sam Edelman silver flats that have held up really well (see picture above).

Have you done a 10-item or capsule wardrobe? Post about it below!

3.1 Phillip Lim Open Back Stripe Sculpted Dress

Fashion Friday: 3.1 Phillip Lim Look for Less

3.1 Phillip Lim Open Back Stripe Sculpted Dress

The perfect summer dress–if you have $550 to spend. 3.1 Phillip Lim Open Back Stripe Sculpted Dress via Nordstrom.

So I’m in the process of putting my spring/summer 10-item wardrobe together–yay! While most of the pieces I wore last year are in good shape, I do need a few things: new t-shirts, a pair of shorts, and a casual-yet-spiffy dress. So I was psyched to spot this 3.1 Phillip Lim Open Back Stripe Sculpted Dress during a recent shopping trip with my mom. It combines three things I love: stripes, a fitted silhouette, and a super-cute back opening. Then I checked the price tag.

$550. Yikes! Yes, that was me dropping the tag like a hot potato and sadly trudging away. I can make a dress last a long time, but I’d have to wear it for about 10 years to make it worthwhile. Will I want a back cut-out when I’m 51? Probably not.

J Crew Factory Chevron-Striped Dress

J Crew Factory Chevron-Striped Dress–a very reasonable $64.50! Via J Crew Factory.

But then! True love found me via banner ad (I know, right? Who even notices banners these days) and showed me this J. Crew Factory (like that is a surprise) Factory Chevron-Striped Dress, which is quite reasonably priced at $64.50. Like the 3.1 Phillip Lim dress, you can see that it’s striped and fitted (albeit with a front pleat), and the neckline and armholes are similar. Instead of white with navy stripes, it’s navy with white stripes. But what captured my attention was . . . (drumroll please):

FFJCrew2Yes! The back opening (described as a “coyback opening” in the Nordstrom URL, good description, meta data!) is very similar. Definitely worth a try! I never even tried on the 3.1 dress (I think my tears would have soiled it), but I’ll be making a trip to Woodburn after Memorial Day weekend!

I feel a little like Betty unearthing a cute knockoff of one of Veronica’s “Paris originals.” Yes, pretty much all of these Fashion Friday posts will contain an Archie Comics reference. You’re welcome.

What are you looking for this summer? Post below!

10 item wardrobe

Winter 10-Item Wardobe–FINALLY

Look at this–two blog posts in one day? How do I do it all? Mostly it involves keeping my daughter busy with books and/or literally holding her while I took the photos. She had a lot of fun dancing on my clothes, too. But finally, yes, my awesome ivory wool fisherman’s sweater arrived, and it was the perfect piece to complete my 10-item wardrobe for the rest of the winter (especially with us visiting Massachusetts this month–brr!).

Well. I kinda cheated. This is actually an 11-item wardrobe. But since this also represents what I’m taking on our trip, I had to add a dress–even if I don’t wear it weekly–and I grouped my two favorite striped shirts as one.

If you haven’t heard of the concept before, the 10-item wardrobe is something I heard about when I first read Jennifer L. Scott’s Madame Chic books, and it hit a chord. I’ve always wanted the perfect, compact, packable wardrobe where all the pieces go together and I never have to think when I get dressed. Plus, being able to close my dresser drawers is always a bonus. The 10 (or 11) items are your core items. This doesn’t include extras like t-shirts and scarves, underwear, outwear, shoes, or evening wear.

I’ve done a couple 10-item wardrobes before, and what’s really struck me is I have a much better sense of my “style,” or what I really like and wear. Look at the pics below and it’s clear that I like red and navy. And stripes. And gray. And Spider-Man. I’ve got to add some comics somewhere!

So, without further ado, here is my 11-item wardrobe:

10 item wardrobe

J. Crew Factory long-sleeved striped boatneck t-shirts.

I love these shirts. I love these shirts so much. I’ve had the navy stripe for more than a year. The red, I bought two months ago. While the navy stripe is a little softer, they are otherwise indistinguishable, age-wise. This is partly because I hang them to dry, but partly because they are thick, well-made, awesome, and well-nigh indestructible. There are two additional colors available at J. Crew Factory and I am seriously considering buying them. Plus, they look great, fit well, and my black nursing bras don’t show through.

10 item wardrobe

Thread & Supply “menswear” blue shirt.

This is a new purchase, a birthday gift from my Mom and Dad (thank you!). It looks a little rumpled in the picture but it’s the perfect “menswear” type shirt, crisp and tailored, but it fits a lady. I mean me.

10 item wardrobe

Spider-Man sweatshirt, Forever 21.

I bought this sweatshirt two-and-a-half years ago and it’s still one of my favorites! I had to mend the waistband once, but otherwise, it’s stellar–and a good conversation piece.

10 item wardrobe

Halogen gray wool-blend sweater with embroidery.

Another new purchase (actually, I think most everything is). This Halogen sweater is cozy, but the embroidery makes it a little more polished.

10 item wardrobe

Red and gray J Crew Factory sweater with gold polka dots.

This would have been perfect for Christmas! The v-neck adds a little sex appeal.

10 item wardrobe

J Crew Factory jeans.

I admit–I literally took these off to take a picture of them. There’s a little enchilada sauce on the hip if you look closely. I was wary of buying light blue jeans (I was scarred by the ’80s and ’90s) but my Mom made me try them on and they’re awesome. Lesson: Moms are always right.

10 item wardrobe

J. Crew Factory red tailored stretch Lexie pant.

Fortunately, there’s enough red in my wardrobe that I had no qualms about including deep-red pants! I think everything except the red sweater goes with this. Wow, these pants are wrinkly. Sorry!

Another item my Mom encouraged me to try on, and bought me for my birthday. I was always suspicious about “ponte” pants. Do you mean tailored sweatpants? But while these are as stretchy and as comfy as pajamas, they look like nice tailored pants. My Mom was right again!

10 item wardrobe

APC sweater dress.

As I said, since we’ll be visiting family in Massachusetts, I needed to include a dress. I love this dress–bought on super clearance, because APC is pricey. It looks very . . . squat in this photo, but it’s actually cute on. The yarn is kind of a gray and navy marl.

10 item wardrobe

Fisherman’s sweater, vintage.

I saved the best for last! I love this sweater so much. It’s so big and cozy–it weighs two pounds. I found it on Etsy from a vintage seller. It’s wool and was clearly handmade. The quality is incredible. And I love, love all the cables and patterns. I bought all kinds of cedar inserts for my bureau to help protect it.

So what do you think? I think this is pretty much the perfect wardrobe. With a pair of tights, some t-shirts, and shoes and accessories, this will fit nicely in a suitcase (not the sweater, I’ll wear it), and I’ll feel well dressed at the in-laws’.

What are your go-to items? Post below!

 

 

Archie #1 Reboot

Happy Monday! Links to Make Your Day Brighter

Archie #1 Reboot

Archie #1, by Mark Waid and Fiona Staples. Wonderful!

Happy Monday! I survived a bittersweet weekend, as I missed San Diego Comic-Con for the second year in a row–it’s not a place for babies. While it was nice to not stand in a booth for 8+ hours per day, I do regret not being in the thick of things and seeing my friends. Boo.

Comics

However, my husband (Dark Horse Comics’ Editor-in-Chief) kept me up to date, and even a little ahead of the loop–I knew to watch for the eruption of excitement when Joss Whedon announced his new comic book series, Twist, about a steampunk female superhero! I even have a vote in for who the artist should be–I’ll let you know if my choice wins out. So while I didn’t get to see my husband on stage in Hall H, I did have a little insider info to keep me warm. Sigh.

The other big release from SDCC was the Star Wars behind-the-scenes reel. It. Is. AWESOME. The practical effects are going to be WONDERFUL. I’m going against AP Style and using all caps, people!

Something I’m going to write a full post on is the much-anticipated (and a little feared, by me), reboot of Archie. That’s right, after 70+ years, Archie Andrews got a major makeover. After the full-body cringes inspired by the Archie New Look Series (shudder), I was worried the new series would be like when your Mom starts saying things like, “Raise the roof!” But it was wonderful. I’ll write more soon.

Survival

Well this is a new section for this blog! NPR told us that the Pacific Northwest is due for a major earthquake and created an app so that Oregonians can get an idea of when services and power would be restored after a 9.0 quake. But even if you’re not in Oregon, there’s a lot of good advice on disaster prep here.

Fashion

I’ve been trying to buy fewer clothes and stick to my 10-Item Wardrobe, but I’ve been dealing with one problem: I’m actually 10 pounds below my pre-baby weight due to breastfeeding, and my shorts are falling off my body. I look like I have baggy elephant butt. So I bought this pair of chino shorts in navy at (of course) J. Crew Factory this weekend!

Books

So we started to go to the library for Book Babies for Sarah, but I have been loving it for myself! I used to spend hours in the library every week when I was growing up, but it’s been years since I’ve gone regularly. I just finished As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride, by Cary Elwes (the actor who played Westley) and it was wonderful. Now, The Princess Bride was my favorite movie in junior high and high school (I made a pirate shirt for my boyfriend–for prom), but I admit I had seen it so many times, I was a little sick of it. No more! This was a delightful read that reignited my love for the movie, and even stranger–there was no bitterness! No scandal! It was as sweet and lovely as the movie–and still interesting!

In other news, we’re going camping in about two weeks. Anyone have any camping food tips?