AT&T sponsored my coverage of Outside Lands this year. Thanks, guys!
Mai Le of Fashionist is my long-time friend and show buddy; this is our second year at Outside Lands together. This year she took some style shots for us. You can find Part 1 of our Outside Lands fashion series here.
Hannah and Jen. Jen made her skirt and earrings at TechShop San Francisco. Hannah wears her bracelets and jewelry every day; they’re gifts from friends.
Look for more of Mai’s shots on Fashioni.st.
Mai Le of Fashionist is my long-time friend and show buddy; this is our second year at Outside Lands together. This year she took some style shots for us:
Carleigh (founder of Fathom and Form jewelry), wearing her own cuff design.
AT&T is sponsoring my coverage of Outside Lands this year. Thanks, guys!
I’m in New York about once a month lately for work and pie, so I thought I’d give you a peek into how I pack for variable weather, and a trip that encompasses both business and social elements. Because I like to pack everything into a single carryon and a laptop/camera bag, I tend to plan my outfits beforehand.
These are the quick snapshots I took for my last trip. They were taken for personal reference so I could just look back at my phone to remember how I wanted to mix and match everything. That’s why there are no fresh flowers and globe collections in the background. Still, I recognize that not everyone is this
anal meticulous, but most people don’t loathe checking bags as much as I do either.
Spring in New York is easy for me because it’s exactly how I dress in San Francisco. Two factors are at play: 1. I need to go from business in the day to drinks at night without stopping by home. 2. I need to prepare for a chill when I’m outside, and the heat of a crowded bar at night. And as I shed layers, I’d like to carry minimal crud around.
The outfit above is how I’d leave the house for a day of work.
Silk scarf, vintage
Cashmere sweater, vintage
Rock crystal necklace, gift
Navy mini, Zara
Royal blue flats, Target
If it’s warmer than I expect, or if the sun comes out mid-morning, I can stuff the tights and scarf in my tote.
And then, whuuuut? I find myself at bar in Greepoint that weirdly has steam heat and a surplus of cute guys. Voila. Orange tank is Mossimo brand from Target.
Same concept, different outfit.
Hand-knit cap, thrift (again, whoever gave this up is a monster)
Cashmere cardigan, L.L. Bean
Handmade safety pin, Etsy (no longer available)
Cotton skirt, purchased in Buenos Aires
Navy Tights, Target
Warm bar or restaurant, and the sweater goes in my purse or over my shoulders. Obviously, I can lose the tights and the hat too, but after 8 hours of hat-hair, and the probability that I haven’t shaved my legs? That’s a last resort. This yellow tank top is also Mossimo for Target, which makes the best long tank tops for tall girls.
It was supposed to rain while I was there, so I wore this warm wool coat on the plane. I can wear it belted or loose, and it works with all of the outfits pictured here.
Silk scarf, Hermes
80s Wool Coat, thrifted
Cashmere sweater vest, thrifted
Brass necklace, ALT Summit gift bag
Same navy skirt from Zara
Grey tights, Target
Elf booties, Vintage
Here are the bones of this outfit, and I can take it down even further by removing the sweater vest. Stripe shirt, H&M.
This is what I wore on the plane. It looks sort of hobo here, but I actually wore it with the belt.
White T, Zara
Black pants, Gap
Flats, Urban Outfitters
Here’s how the outfit looks without the coat. The grey long-sleeve T-shirt is Gap Body, and it’s the best thing ever. I’m about to order it in every color because it’s so soft and layers so well. Cozy.
Here’s the same Zara T-shirt without a layering , which I paired again with the unstoppable Zara skirt. In reality I ended up wearing it with the black pants for solo brunch with my favorite novel. The vintage-style half bra beneath is Anthropologie (pervert).
So those are my layering tricks. You’ll note that I dress almost entirely in color blocks, with print coming in as an accessory or base layering piece.
How do you make your wardrobe stretch when you’re traveling somewhere with temperature swings? I’m all ears.
I met Janna through my long-time friend Mai Le of Fashioni.st. She has that kind of thinky style that makes me want to take notes on her outfits. I’ve always wanted to do a maternity Mighty Closet, and when I found out Janna was pregnant with twins, I was thrilled for her, of course, but also pretty thrilled for us. Janna recently moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles, so Mai did a quick photo shoot while she was in town visiting.
Take it away, Janna:
Let me just start by saying that being seven months pregnant with twins is exhausting! But, of course thrilling at the same time. Mix in selling a house and relocating to a new city, and well, you have yourself one tired pregnant mamma to be!
I work in the fashion industry as a trend consultant, sometimes trend forecaster and, my favorite title is “futurist.” Who doesn’t want to be a futurist! Lucky for me I work for a company in Paris, called Promostyl, which means that I get to work from home and email in French a lot. I love what I do, and wouldn’t trade it for the world. I get to work with design teams from a bunch of industries including fashion, tech, and industrial design, and get to conversate and debate the future of design with some intelligent and enlightened folks. As an indulgence, I sometimes teach at a few colleges and am constantly inspired by students and their creative ideas.
This is a little more of a San Francisco outfit. Something I would wear to do a trend presentation or seminar, or meet up for dinner with folks to discuss the future of ladies neck ties, or the influence of the corset in modern day. If I weren’t pregnant, I’d wear this with a tight denim vest.
I come from the land of high-waisted jeans and jumpsuits, and of course heels, so this transition has been interesting! But I have some good finds and have managed to keep rockin’ the heels in the wedge/platform style that seems to be working out just fine.
Dress: Was my mothers, but is from I-Magnin
Shoes: Chloe (5″ heel)
I am so thrilled at the prospect of becoming a mother, and can’t wait to meet these little ones. Pregnancy has been an interesting ride for sure. No one told me about the morning sickness, and apparently I am the only one of my friends to ever have this, because none of my friends that are already moms could relate. But I love the “bump,” or maybe we should call it the “small mountain” at this point, and figuring out what to wear has been interesting, and fun. This dress has been a dream while I’m pregnant. I found it at a vintage store in Oakland (Mercy Vintage), but coincidentally it is also from I-Magnin.
My husband and I were living in San Francisco (one of my favorite places), but in the last few months we relocated to LA, where I have a bigger client base, and also where there is a little more sunshine (no offense SF, I still love you) and some space for these kiddos in my belly to play around in the grass and run through the sprinklers. I’m already sourcing and making cute little swimwear outfits for the two of them — a boy and a girl! I wear this to go to art openings and to meet up with people for coffee in my new neighborhood, Silverlake.
The necklace is one of my new favorites, and reminds me of something my mom would have made in her pottery days, but it’s from a great boutique in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley, called Reliquary and is designed by a woman in Philly. I’m inspired to make some clay beads!
Shoes are my go-to clogs by Swedish Hasbeens.
This is an all-time favorite: Maxi dress by Isabel Marant. This was one of my first pregnancy purchases before the bump started showing, and it has served me well. Comfort and style! This dress is pure class. Great for waltzing into the Chateau Marmont for a cocktail.
Necklace is vintage.
Shoes are by Belle by Siegerson Morrison.
This outfit is a bit of an amalgam. Mostly vintage. The dress is one of those moo-moo maxi hippie dresses that can be quite terrible if worn the wrong way, but I have been able to rock it for a while now. Hhere I am still trying to rock the leather vest, but this may not work for too much longer!
This is kind of a farmers market outfit, followed by a long brunch on a hot sunny Sunday.
The necklace is a gold collar with a leopard on it and is one of my favorite jewelry pieces of all time. It’s from Bird in Brooklyn.
This dress must be worn with heels, these are some of my favorite vintage 1970s clogs.
Ah, next to the Isabel Marant dress, this was a fantastic pregnancy purchase. It is by the brand Hatch, and has fulfilled my pregnant lady jumpsuit dreams! It is so comfortable and versatile and also comes in a cool cotton version. I love this. Cute for after pregnancy also with a belt.
I think this outfit is something I would wear when I want to make a good first impression. When I want to leave a room and have people say, “Who’s the cool pregnant lady?”
The shoes are by Fiel, and I call these my pregnancy platforms. I love the mesh that is airy and cute but also great if my little feet are a swollen.
Necklace is from a friend’s shop in Highland Park (LA), called Platform. It’s a fantastic store with just exquisite style and home finds from all over the globe, as well some great local LA designers. I love turquoise, so this piece caught my eye right away.
All my outfits are things that I want to be able to still wear when the bump is gone and the babies are in my arms, and when I have a waist and can walk more than a block in my heels. I think all of these fit that bill just fine!
BAM! Janna, you are going above and beyond, my friend. Wearing heels while pregnant should be an Olympic sport. Which is why I’ve sent you a medal, please look for it in the mail.
Huge thanks to Mai (@mai) for the photos, and to Janna for letting us into her closet when obviously could have used the time to nap. Hooray, ladies!
I’ve been pinning swimsuits again, so there’s more to see in Swimsuits for Shy Girls and Swimsuits for Bold Girls. By the way, that perfect ruffly bikini above is one kazillion dollars, which is not preventing me from wanting it.
Susan Wagner of The Working Closet always looks like she just showered. It took me years to figure her out, because her exterior is so calm, but her brain is like a hamster on a wheel.
I’ll see her at a conference in some sensible American sport ensemble with a glass of wine resting in her hand. She waves me over, “I haven’t talked to you forever!” And I come-to three hours later with a notebook full of Beautiful Mind scribbles and six new business plans.
Susan likes to get stuff done, son. I’ve never known her to have fewer than four jobs, and I’m pretty sure she’s optimized that way. She is busy, but she is tidy.
Remember last week when Natalie said she always wished she could be a person with a minimalist uniform? Susan is that woman. She’ll come to your house, throw out everything in your closet, and somehow make you feel like you have more to wear afterward:
I’m a style blogger, not a fashion blogger — my preoccupation isn’t with what’s on the runway but what’s in your closet. Or, in this case, in my closet. And honestly, there are fewer things in my closet than you might expect.
Although there are a lot of striped tees.
This is a little ridiculous. (And there are actually more — a couple were in the laundry. I need an intervention.)
Despite my ridiculous collection of striped shirts, I spend a lot of time preaching the gospel of the Carefully Edited Wardrobe, which goes like this:
Less is more, and having fewer things creates more options.
Every successful style makeover starts with a closet clean-out and ends with a small collection of perfect pieces. Repetition is the key to personal style, and accessories are an easy way to upgrade even the most basic outfit.
Tee on me: StyleMint
Tees from left: J. Crew, Lands’ End, Forever21, Lands’ End, GAP, Forever21
Shorts: Old Navy
Necklace: J. Crew
This is my uniform.
I work at home, so my everyday look is pretty casual. Among other things, I’m an editor for a pet website, which is hilarious because the only pet my family owns is a Betta Fish, and it’s kind of a miracle that we haven’t killed him. Yet.
Because I work from home, I spend a lot of my day staring at a screen, but I’m also a full-time mom, and a partner in a boutique social media consulting firm (Engage OKC). That means a normal work day can include editing copy, meeting with clients, and hauling kids to karate and baseball. My go-to look is a T-shirt — usually striped, of course — and a skirt, which is appropriate for everything from lunch out to an hour of kickboxing.
Watching kickboxing, of course. No one kickboxes in a skirt. At least not around here.
I wear a lot of belts; I truly believe that a belt can change your life. Or at least your look. A belt creates a waist and gives your shape some definition; it’s also an easy way to change up a look. I wear a belt with just about everything, including cocktail dresses. I buy them a little long so I can wear them either at my waist or around my hips, depending on my outfit and my mood. I just loop the extra length through the belt and voila!
Tee: J. Crew
Bracelets: Stella & Dot
Sandals: Jack Rogers
I live in Oklahoma, where the average summer temperature is something akin to the surface of the sun. That means that my main style goal from March to October is not to be hot. If you want the truth about my summer wardrobe, it consists largely of running clothes and swimwear, neither of which will be making an appearance here. You’re welcome.
I spent years not wearing shorts because … well, just because. I had a bit of a mid-life crisis a couple of years ago, where I pined for all the things I would never get to do (like live in Paris or work for Vogue). But that got boring, so I decided to do something constructive instead. I started running (Couch to 5K FTW!) and in the last year I’ve run four half marathons.
I also started thinking about how silly it was to waste time being sweaty and uncomfortable solely because my legs didn’t look like Heidi Klum’s. This summer I’m obsessed with shorts, although fortunately for my wallet the ones I’m really in love with all come from Old Navy and cost less than $25. Score!
I totally believe in dressing shorts up, although I do not believe in “dressy shorts.” I wear my shorts with pretty tops and blingy necklaces and even a blazer. I do not, however, wear shorts with heels. I have my limits, y’all. And you should, too.
Tee: J. Crew
Shorts: Old Navy
Necklace, bracelet: J. Crew
Sandals: Jack Rogers
I’m a big believer in mixing high- and low-end pieces. I do most of my shopping at J. Crew, Old Navy and the GAP, with an occasional stop at Forever21 for cheap t-shirts. The J. Crew catalog — which they’ve just rebranded as their “style guide” — is my bible; I tear out photos and recreate those looks with pieces from other places. If I could, I would shop exclusively at J. Crew, but I have two kids who need things like food and clothes and running water, so that’s not really an option.
My shopping strategy is to choose specific investment pieces — ideally, things I can wear over and over and over — and then pair them with less pricey pieces. This spring, my investment was a denim shirt which I wear aaaaaallll the time, no joke. Totally worth the $98 I paid for it. (Also totally worth the investment, two blazers: one in wool flannel, one in chambray. They go with everything and dress up any outfit.)
Shirt: J. Crew
Dress: Old Navy
Earrings: Stella & Dot
Sandals: Jack Rogers
Did you think I was kidding about wearing things over and over? Hey look, it’s that same chambray shirt! Back again! I also own this skirt in four different colors — navy, pink, and khaki linen/cotton for summer, and purple wool for winter — and I wear it almost constantly, in one iteration or another. (Ed note: If you recognize the skirt, you might have seen Susan recommend it in Wardrobe Basics for Real Women a while back.) And hey, it’s that same belt from before! And the same shoes. Go figure.
(I have ugly feet, largely from the running, so no closeups of my sandals. Again, you’re welcome.)
I get dressed every single day, and I don’t mean that I change out of the yoga pants I slept in and into a different pair of yoga pants; I mean real clothes — a dress or a skirt and tee or some other not-my-pajamas kind of outfit. I wouldn’t say that I get dressed up, although I hear that from people quite a lot (as in, “Why are you so dressed up???”) but I do wear clothes that are not designed for exercise or sleeping for the parts of my day when I am not exercising or sleeping. It’s a simple thing, and it makes a big difference, both in the way I look and the way I feel.
Try it — #getdressed. It’s easier than you think.
Here I am, pretending that I’m in a J. Crew catalog. And by that I mean leaning over awkwardly, for absolutely no reason:
My biggest closet secret is that I hand-wash and line dry almost everything I own.
Jeans go in the washing machine, inside out, in cold water, but other than that, everything I wear gets a bath in the sink with some extra delicate detergent (or baby shampoo). I don’t really like to shop so I work extra hard to make the things I love last.
Shirt: J. Crew
Skirt: J. Crew
Shoes: Jack Rogers
Necklace: Stella & Dot
Clutch: Ellington Handbags
Speaking of things I love, is my go-to look for summer cocktails. The dress is cotton, which is nice when it’s 1,000 degrees outside, and it has pockets, so I can skip taking a bag (leaving both hands free for drinks and food and hugging). I wore this same outfit a few years back to interview Tim Gunn and he admired my shoes. Life = complete.
Please note my sash. One of my super powers is the ability to tie the perfect bow. Unfortunately, this means that if I run into you at a party and your sash isn’t tied right, I will be compelled to untie it and start over. Of course it also means that if I live next door to you and you’re trying to wrangle your toddler into her birthday dress and cannot get the bow right, I will come to your rescue.
Dress: J. Crew
Necklace: White House | Black Market
In general, I would describe my look as fairly classic and conservative. But every once in a while, I like to mix it up a little. And by “mix it up” I mean pile on multiple huge necklaces, shimmy into some skinny jeans, and add a pair of reallyreallytall platform sandals.
It’s good to keep people guessing.
I love this outfit because it’s basically just jeans and a tee, all fancied up. The blouse is silk but it’s washable silk, which is pretty much a gift from God. I wore a version of this outfit to the Versace party at Mom 2.0, but with red shorts instead of the jeans. Love.
Blouse: J. Crew
Jeans: Old Navy
Necklaces: (from top) White House | Black Market, Stella & Dot, Madewell
Bracelet: J. Crew
Sandals: Dr. Scholl’s Shoes
Lips: Butter London Lippy in Snog
So what’s the take-away here? Shop smart, don’t be afraid to repeat outfits, and when in doubt, pile on the necklaces. It’s that easy. I promise.
Thanks so much Susan, for the photos and the wisdom. I miss you and your little pink shoes, my dear. I pinch your ruddy cheeks.