WIW 5/17: Spring workwear--blue snakes and butterflies in the garden

I have been wearing a lot of patterned dresses as my Fast Fallback Outfit since I've been rushed this week. I also have been feeling the urge to dress in a more spring-like fashion, but pastels don't look good on me. These are all pieces you've seen before but not all together like this. I tried it with a blue cardigan but felt more put together with the structured jacket (plus I can't resist pulling out my favorite ink blue jacket again!) And I thought it would be cute to call the outfit snakes and butterflies in the garden (as I've heard some of you referring to snakes in the garden before when combining snakeskin and florals). These blue snakeskin pumps are so awesome and so me--except the height! I so wish they were 2 inches shorter! Not practical for a full day of work--I had to change into kitten heels midway through the day. If anyone ever sees a mid-heel ink blue snakeskin pump for sale, let me know! Till then I will suffer for the sake of fashion! :)

ETA: DH liked this outfit a lot (though I wasn't wearing the blue heels at that time!)

WHBM ink blue jacket and blue snakeskin Mary Jane heels
Ralph Lauren blue and white floral sleeveless faux wrap dress from TJ Maxx
Jason Wu for Target straw bag with navy trim
Kate Spade butterfly necklace


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/14 & 5/16: Yellow dress, yellow shirt/skirt, yellow sunbird

1. Yellow floral Eliza J belted sheath dress
Kate Spade grey croc tote
Taupe Chie Mihara Written In Stars heels
H&M grey snakeskin cuff
Fake pearl studs

2. Lafayette 148 cognac leather jacket
Mustard Jason Wu for Target sleeveless blouse
ASOS yellow and black chevron stripe midi skirt
Born Bronze ballet flats
Fossil chevron stripe satchel

3-5. My daughter in her class play, as a golden sunbird. Yellow is her favorite color! She said her lines perfectly!


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


Blue dress for sister of the bride?

My sister is getting married this October in Sedona, Arizona. I am not in the wedding party but my two kids will be flower girl and ring bearer. I am looking for an appropriate dress for the wedding. Something not bridesmaid-y, but also not mother of the bride-ish either. The wedding will be in the daytime and outdoors, and I'm not sure about the reception (possibly dinnertime). It will be warm or hot most likely. My sister wants royal blue and white as her colors. Obviously I can't do white, but should I try to wear something blue (since I'll be in the family pics), or will that make me look like a bridesmaid since they will all be wearing royal blue? If not blue, what color? There's no rush on this, I just thought I'd pick your brains so I can start leisurely looking for the right dress. Ideally $250 or less, and I don't typically like strapless or spaghetti strap dresses.

Here's a few possibilities from skimming the Nordstrom website--which of these styles look like they might work best/look like my style? Any other suggestions? Thanks!

1. Suzi Chin for Maggie Pleated dress--nice, but too bridesmaid-y? Too short?

2. Adrianna Papell Dot Halter Gown--navy maxi with white dots--I love the dots, but not sure about the halter style on me though, also the navy might clash with the royal blue

3. Calvin Klein full length halter gown

4. Alex evenings beaded ruched jersey gown--on sale! I think this would be flattering on me, but would it be too MOTB?

5. T by Tadashi V neck tiered ruffle skirt chiffon dress--I like it, but does it look dated?

6. Maggy London Stretch Satin Sheath dress

7. Alex & Ava Dolman Sleeve Jersey dress

8. Suzi Chin for Maggy Belted Cap Sleeve Sheath dress--could potentially reuse this to wear to work.

9. Maggy London Drape Front Jersey dress:

ETA: I totally forgot! I also have a couple options in my closet:
10. Jason Wu for Target navy poplin dress. This actually might work well for the occasion because it's rather dressy.

11. Tory Burch navy shirtdress with white hearts. This would be cute because of the hearts/wedding tie in.


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/14 (and K/R): Kate Spade Topliner trench and matching floral bag

YLF'ers, I have been a very naughty SYB'er! As you know I have the Kate Spade black & white Japanese floral Austin sheath dress that I got last month at 45% off. Well, I found out the matching Melinda handbag and Topliner trench (the one that Girl X and Zapotee have) are on sale for 50% off, and I could not resist! I am in matchy matchy heaven with the black and white dress, bag in reverse print, and trench with matching Japanese floral liner (it's a Florence Broadhurst vintage print). I bought the bag at my local Kate Spade but they did not have the trench so I drove an hour to the nearest one that had ones to try on (I wasn't sure what size I would need). I ended up in a size 6 (I am normally size 4-6 in most things, but have one size 8 KS dress). It's a bit snug at the top when fully buttoned (but I can still move my arms comfortably), but the 8 was definitely too baggy. It's OK though since I probably will not be layering bulky sweaters underneath. I really like the fit and flare silhouette and the contrast trim. It feels very ladylike to me, unlike most standard trenches which are somewhat unisex/masculine looking to me. I have been lusting after Kate Middleton's ruffled hem Burberry trench ever since I saw it, but Burberry prices are not something I want to pay right now (plus that style sold out in a day, apparently, and I also missed getting the cheap knockoff). Even at half off the Kate Spade is expensive for me, but I think I'd get a lot of use out of it and it goes well with my style.

The only concern I have is the color. Yes, it is beige. I have been so worried that you won't like it on me and will say it's "soul-sucking beige". I know Asians aren't supposed to wear beige (or at least it's very tricky with our skin color). I would have preferred if the coat were cream. But it has a yellowish undertone (rather than grey) to the beige, so that's supposed to be good if I'm a warm toned Deep Autumn, right? I tried to take several pics in different kinds of lighting so you can get an idea, but it's tough to photograph the true color. Also, I'm hoping you won't say it's too voluminous/overwhelming on my frame. I do also have a cream and black cropped trench jacket from WHBM, but I just love the drama of a long trench coat! I really am curious (and nervous) of what you will think of this coat on me!

And GirlX and Zap--can't wait to see more pics of you in your trenches so I can get more inspiration!

The handbag is vinyl (so it's vegan for those who are looking for such a bag), and has a cool neon orange lining. I really like the structured satchel shape.

I am so happy I found these two pieces to complete my "set"! I wore 1-6 to work (but kept the tags on the coat). So what do you think--are these keepers? They were 50% off and final sale, so if you really hate the coat I would have to either beg Kate Spade to take it back for store credit (I've done that once before but it's not guaranteed) or sell it on eBay. Nervously awaiting your verdict!

1-6. With KS Austin matching dress
7. Raspberry H&M cardigan
8-11. With WHBM striped top and Gap real skinny pants and All Black Fish Bow pumps
12-14. With rust Ann Taylor tank and Always Skinny jeans and rust Chie Mihara sandals.
15. No flash, indoors
16. Flash, indoors
17. Outdoors
18-20. Melinda purse


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


Are there any maxis that are YLF approved?

I'm a little mystified by the lack of love for maxi skirts and dresses on YLF. It seems the advice whenever a maxi is posted is to shorten to a midi or return (thinking of Zap and Mo's recent threads). I had one old maxi skirt with a leaf print, that I purged after it got a thumbs down. But wondering if there are any maxi skirts or dresses that are YLF approved, and what makes the difference? I thought I saw a white button down shirt and black evening maxi skirt on Angie once (or was it a midi, now I can't remember)?

I posted this maxi dress before, but haven't had a chance to wear it yet. And browsing online briefly, here's one maxi dress that I like because of the colors and pattern, but I don't really like spaghetti straps on me so I don't think it would work for me. And the third dress is something I ordered but I haven't tried it on yet. It's more of a high-low maxi though--is a high/low better?

So are there any maxis that work for everyday looks and get YLF love, or are maxis out because midis are all the rage right now? I am well stocked in the midi department, just wondering if I should expand my horizons.


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/12 eve: Sue Wong beaded evening gown

Finally had a chance to wear my Sue Wong beaded evening gown that I bought at the Rack online. It's wine colored with a black lace beaded overlay and an illusion back. It's size 6 but was a bear to zip up (sticky zipper plus tight bodice)--had to enlist DH's help. Brings back bad memories of my mom always asking me to zip her into too tight evening gowns--guess I'm repeating the cycle, LOL (larger size wasn't available). Once it was zipped up it was totally comfortable though.

I wore the black beaded cross necklace and earrings from my Wild West holiday party saloon girl costume:
Never thought I would have a chance to wear that necklace again! Initially I was going to wear my WHBM black and silver pendant, but DH and I agreed this one looked much better with the dress. We went to a work fundraiser gala (I got free tickets through work), and the theme was Spanish Festival, so this dress was perfect for the occasion! Wore it with my Kate Spade black trench, small black sequined evening bag (it's so old I don't even remember getting it--I think my mom must have given it to me), and old black sequined evening sandals (sorry for the unpainted toenails but I don't typically paint my nails so I don't have any nail polish). The kids stayed at home with a babysitter. It wasn't a true "date" but at least we had a chance to dress up and have a nice dinner, and I could finally rip the tags off my Sue Wong dress!


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/13: Mother's Day

Sorry this is a repeat outfit--I only have a few casual MOTG outfits, compared to my big dressy work wardrobe. I spent a fun and relaxing day with DH and the kids. DH cooked breakfast including crepes with homemade chocolate sauce, bananas & berries. After swim lessons we had an Indian buffet lunch, then took the kids to ride their trike/bike. DD drew a cute card for me and both of them gave me lots of hugs and kisses. We skyped with Grandma & Nana as well.

Hope your Mother's Day was great too!

Jason Wu for Target red and navy striped shirt
Tulle navy peacoat
Gap Long and Leans
Red Converse
Jason Wu for Target Milu cat tote


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/12: IKEA yellow & turquoise (Lemon Liftoff MaryK copy)

Waving at MaryK! I squealed in delight when I saw that MaryK had bought the same Anthro Lemon Liftoff blouse that I have, and thought it was funny that TurkeyVulture and both of us all wore magenta and brown with the yellow blouse (see comparison pics in the thread):

MaryK inspired me to break out the blouse again, and I thought about pairing it with bright denim to copy the Anthro catalog pic (#3). I loved it with the green jeans and turquoise heels, but since I didn't have green jeans I decided to use my turquoise skinny jeans instead.

So imagine my delight when I saw MaryK's WIW from yesterday when she wore the blouse with turquoise skinny jeans!
I think we must be psychic style twins because we're totally on the same wavelength! I wore my white denim jacket too so that we could be exact twins--big fun! I wore my yellow Converse since I was MOTG today, and paired it with my Fossil floral satchel since it has yellow and teal accents. As Denise said, this outfit is very Swedish--maybe I should go shop at IKEA! The outfit was a little bright and crazy for DS's Music Together class compared to what the other parents were wearing, but it was still fun. I do have to admit though, I am starting to feel a bit self conscious when I wear super bright outfits and everyone else is in drab casual clothes!

AE cropped white denim jacket
Anthro Lemon Liftoff blouse with owl print
Blue Essence skinny jeans in turquoise
Yellow Converse
Fossil floral satchel


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


"Makeup makes women appear more confident"--should I bother with it?

As you know I rarely wear makeup or do anything with my hair. I'm so busy trying to get dressed and out the door that I never think about hair and makeup. But I recently saw an article about a study that showed that wearing makeup makes you seem more professional and competent to others. They showed pictures of women in various levels of makeup (bare faced, natural, professional and glamorous). The ones with makeup were judged as being more confident and competent, even with the heavier "glamorous" makeup (although apparently the "glamourous" women are rated as slightly less trustworthy, LOL).

I know Angie has suggested makeup to me before. So I thought I'd give makeup a try today. I dug up a makeup set that I got at Nordstrom for Christmas but hadn't really used yet.

Here are my pics with different levels of makeup (ignore the wet hair):
1. Bare--washed with Olay exfoliator brush (like Clarisonic)--that was new for me! With foundation on but no makeup. This is already more than I typically do!
2. Natural--with Clinique Black Honey sheer lipstick
3/4. Professional--with eyeshadow, mascara, eyeliner, blush, and powder. This felt pretty heavily made up to me looking in the mirror, but the pictures make it look less bright/made up.
5-6. My outfit and how the makeup looked at a distance.
7. Levels of makeup used in the study--bare, natural, professional, glamorous

I have to admit that I don't know if I want to bother with makeup. It takes extra time to get ready in the morning (and I'm usually running late as it is), plus it needs re-application several times in the day so that's more time spent. And today I went to the restroom and discovered my mascara was all smudged (I'm not used to wearing it and I sometimes rub my eyes) and I had raccoon eyes. And the lipstick needed to be reapplied multiple times. So it's a lot of fussing!

So my question is--should I bother with makeup? Is it worth it? I've usually done no makeup or just a swipe of the sheer lipstick. My eyes are hidden behind specs--does it even matter if I wear eye makeup? Should I be going for full makeup every day at work? Do I look more professional, competent and confident in #3/4 as opposed to #1/2? I have to admit I do think #3/4 looks nicer. But are there any ways to cut down on the time spent applying and reapplying makeup?

And do you all wear makeup at work?


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


WIW 5/10 & 5/11: Patterned dresses are my FFBO too (w/ Rae paper doll)

I found myself agreeing with Kari (http://youlookfab.com/welookfa.....ack-outfit)--printed dresses ARE the perfect Fast Fallback Outfit! They're what I grab when I'm in a rush or don't want to spend time thinking about mixing and matching separates and creating an outfit. It's an instant all-in-one outfit!

1-2. This is my version of Kari's FFBO scribble dress. And here's the debut of my black doctor bag. This is the perfect bag for this dress, as it doesn't compete with the pattern but still is dressy and structured. I wore this to work and then to a wine and cheese social to meet other parents at DD's new school (she starts K in the fall). I wanted to wear something nice and a little bit dressy, but not too fancy or intimidating fashion-wise.
Laundry by Shelli Segal pink, white and black draped waist dress from Bluefly
Black H&M tank as a cami (since I was going to work)
Ralph Lauren black "doctor" Newbury satchel from TJ Maxx
Indigo by Clark black Mary Jane pumps
White House Black Market silver and black pendant

3-4. Today I'm doing Rae's paper doll suggestion for me--purple sheath dress, cognac leather jacket and boots. It seemed more like a fall outfit, esp. given how warm it was today, but I had orders to follow! The dress is sleeveless so it was fine without the jacket. This is another good FFBO dress--it's not printed but has a textured polka dot pattern. This is one of my most favorite dresses--it really flatters my apple figure.
Adrianna Papell purple polka dot sheath dress from Nordstrom Rack
Lafayette 148 cognac leather jacket from Nordstrom Rack
Timberland Stratham Heights cognac heeled boots
Bronze and orange stretch cuff from Forever 21
Fossil floral satchel


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →