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[ Top row, from left: February 2012 / November 2011 / July 2011 // Second row, from left: November 2010 / January 2011 / February 2011 // Third row, from left: December 2010 / April 2011 / February 2011 ]
If I had had my act together today, I’d have (a) actually picked out a pair of green pants instead of continuing to endlessly search for the perfect one, (b) worn said pants and made it long enough into the day without getting baby spit-up on them to take photos, and (c) actually edited and posted said photos amid a blur of deadlines and an allergies-without-medicine induced haze. Because you all know part (a) was by far the least realistic of the required elements, I bring you…this recap of some of my favorite ways to wear green and green-ish through the ages, settings, seasons and stages of being not-yet-pregnant, barely-pregnant, hugely-pregnant and thankfully-not-pregnant-anymore.
*and I would love, love, love your suggestions on green pants. I tried those adorable tiny babypants from Target, but the pants-kryptonite of my waist-to-just-above-the-knee ratio proved their undoing (terrible pun intended). Have a wonderful Tuesday!
- Tweed Sweater: Vintage Ralph Lauren, mommed
- Heathered Tee: Liz Lange for Target
- Jeans: Old Navy
- Black Croc Wedges: Stuart Weitzman via Bloomingdale’s
- Red Belt: Forever 21
- Necklace: BeadleBop via Etsy.com
- Earrings: Mall vendor
My mom kind of hates this outfit, and she can’t believe I’ve belted her sweater. Sorry, mom. Win some, lose some.
I, on the other hand, kind of loved it. It fit the bill for the first of two blissful, largely-responsibility free days at home with baby m. after I finished my exams last week. I’m a serious skirts and dresses girl for work and school, but on my home-with-baby days, I’m falling back in love with pants: it really is just easier. Other things I love? That this tee is stretchy enough that it’s simple to nurse in without complicated layering gymnastics (and yup, it’s maternity…I’ve got one more day, right?). For purely practical reasons (and sometimes, form has to follow function), it’s hard to beat a sweater that layers well under a waterproof jacket for a rainy day.
…All of which was a really long way of saying, I got to be home (and just at home!) for the first time in ages! And I wore jeans and a tee-shirt! But really, it’s an illustration of a broader kind of boundary-blurring that I’ve been struggling with all term, and am hoping to get a handle on before classes resume in mid-January. While I occasionally fancy myself a high-quality binary deconstructor (though sadly, never as cool as this binary-smashing superhero, who I am apparently the last person on
EarthTwitter to discover), I’m in serious need of some brighter lines between my work life and my home life. And I’m working on ways to get them, both inside and outside my head. I don’t need stone walls, nor am I likely (particularly after having a child, which is a whole other kind of boundary-blurring experience) to have a life totally devoid of the liminal. But I’d like to get to a place where, when someone asks if I’m “home” today, I can just say, “yes,” and not “yes, but I have to …”, both because that’s actually the answer and because it’s one I feel at peace with giving. The first is a time management issue, the second raises broader questions.
But hey! Look at my jeans and tee-shirt! “Home” need not mean unconscious, sartorially or otherwise. Fellow work-at-home types (or work-that-you-occasionally-take-home types): what are your best time managing, balance inducing, head-clearing strategies?
- Draped Cardigan: vince via Nordstrom’s, gift from mom
- Red Tank: Liz Lange for Target
- Boot Cut Jeans: Old Navy
- Red Heels: UO
- Necklace: BeadleBop via etsy
- Teal Earrings: mall vendor
Those of you who follow me on twitter know that it was not exactly a banner weekend around here. But though our Saturday had a less than ideal start, it had an unexpectedly lovely finish: with both baby m. and husband D. on the mend from their respective (and very minor) colds, we were able to take advantage of my parents’ generous offer to babysit and actually go on a (gasp!) date for the first time since m. was born two months ago. We had a delightful dinner at a casual brasserie near us, and while we were only gone for two hours and fifteen minutes (during which m. was sound asleep and my parents were watching the unexpected football resurgence of my alma mater on tv), it was wonderful to be able to indulge in some of those things that have been absent from our lives for a while: unpasteurized cheese, sparking wine, and uninterrupted adult conversation.
I had grander plans for what I was going to wear for this vaunted occasion, including this gorgeous blazer (a pregnancy gift from mom) that I can’t seem to wear without looking like Freddy Mercury, but I ended up wearing an outfit that felt like a dressed-up snuggie. I’d never tried to wear this cardigan with non-skinny jeans before, but I love the way it looks with this boot-cut pair and heels. And what do you know: yet another analogous color pairing, this time of bright red and red-orange (with a pinky-peach necklace thrown in for good measure). Was it the apotheosis of date night outfits? Of course not, nor was it the most glamorous, feminine thing I’ve worn since m.’s birth. But it was appropriate for the occasion and helped me mentally refocus for a relaxing, rejuvenating evening after what had been a very, very long day, which earns it at least an A- in my book!
Long cardigans with pants? Yay or nay? What do you wear when you want to feel glammed up and comfortable at the same time?
- Peach-Orange Top: Japanese Weekend via eBay
- Red Cardigan: Vintage Michael Kors, mommed
- Skinnies: Gap Maternity
- Brown Metallic Loafers: Naturalizer via DSW
- Earrings: Mall Vendor
And with that, friends, our experiment comes to a close. There’s not a ton to say about this look, which was perfect for a day I spent at home with baby m. and not getting nearly enough work done, save that it wouldn’t have happened had it not been for my oh-my-goodness-totally-desperate need to do the laundry. How is that, you ask? Well, if I hadn’t needed to wash them, I would have worn my boot-cut jeans, and then this top would have been too long and so on and so forth and I never would have found myself, at 5:00 p.m., taking photos in the fading afternoon light while waiting for m. to wake up from her nap. Which goes to show that Amy is so right: there’s almost always a way to turn “clothes” into an “outfit,” and it’s probably worth trying, even if you aren’t really planning on leaving the house (and perhaps especially if you aren’t planning on leaving the house because you’re spending it at home with an infant!). And really, it was worth it: I felt better, and I managed to salvage a crazy morning into a productive afternoon and evening. In an ideal world, I’d have worn this combination (which is my favorite analogous pairing) with a gray or navy pencil skirt and brown heels or boots, but this more casual version worked well for the day I was, you know, actually having.
As an aside, baby m. is 8 weeks old today. How did that even happen?
Have a wonderful weekend, friends, and safe travels to everyone heading out early for the holiday!
- Winter White Sweater/Jacket Thing: Vintage Piazza Sempione, mommed
- Black Nursing Tank: Bravado Designs via Figure8Maternity
- Boot Cut Jeans: Old Navy
- Brown Metallic Loafers: Naturalizer via DSW
- Necklace: Gifted
- Earrings: Mall vendor
In somewhat comedic symmetry, the last time I blogged this sweater/jacket thing was the day after I found out I was pregnant with m. (Amused note to future self: taking a pregnancy test at 11 p.m. after coming home from a wedding, regardless of the results, will not lead to sleep! But apparently it did lead to pretty adorably curled hair the following morning.) Because I feel like I’ve been living dog years of late, January seems like a lifetime ago (and in a way, of course, it was!), but the basic look is pretty much the same: warm winter white paired with dark denim and warm medium brown and the same silver necklace, tweaked slightly for my current circumstances.
In the last iteration, I was lamenting my difficulties with surrendering my waist (irony alert!), in part because I was loathe to de-emphasize my favorite body part. Postpartum, I have related anxieties, as I try to figure out how to dress for my altered proportions. I’m navigating my way through a sartorial uncanny valley, dressing a same-but-different body for a life that’s same-but-different in both visible and invisible ways. That said, I think I like the halfway-structured aspects of this top, which disciplined my top half without overly constraining it, and the way the lush richness of the knit fabric and sleeve detailing dressed up an otherwise humdrum pair of jeans. You all had some great suggestions last time of how to wear this jacket; any further thoughts as I try to make it work in the future?
Have a lovely, lovely weekend everyone! Coming next week: several days in the life of a tightly analogous color pairing, along with still more maternity wardrobe essentials.
- Breton-Striped Raglan: Old Navy
- Nursing Tank: Bravado Designs via Figure8Maternity.com
- Necklace: Gifted
- Earrings: Old Navy $7 bin
- Boot-cut Jeans: Old Navy “Flirt”
- Those Red Heels Everyone Has: Urban Outfitters
Remember when I threw myself a pity party about my lack of pants? I decided to put on my big girl panties, take a deep breath and spend a (reasonable) amount of money on a few key pieces that, while I don’t “need” in some per se sense, will make me feel more like myself in my stretched out skin and embrace the body I have now, with all the honestly-still-a-pretty-big-deal things it’s doing.
…which is really all a fancy way of saying, I did it: I bought mom jeans. But this deep, dark, very-reasonably-priced pair from Old Navy is actually decidedly un-mommish, and has the very-slight-bootcut and mid rise I so dearly missed about my pre-pregnancy jeans. And I’ll admit it: they’re flattering, comfortable, and while I still could in all honesty probably care less what number is on the tag, I’m much happier with this state of affairs than I was wandering around pantsless and contemplating just how many months I was going to spend restricted to elastic waistbands and jersey dresses. They’re pants that fit the body and the life I have now, equally functional for long days of trying to study during baby m.’s naps, long walks in the park, and the eventual out-of-the-house date night we promise we’ll have sometime soon.
This top is also new, from the same Old Navy trip, and I love its slouchy chicness and easy, practical shape (nursing access is an up-or-down possibility, depending on how rough I feel like being on the neckline and how much I’m willing to risk baby m. deciding to share her breakfast with me….). Overall, the look is one I probably wouldn’t have worn pre-pregnancy, when I loathed the idea of surrendering my waistline and wearing something so un-fitted up top. But maybe that’s just another positive thing about this strange journey my body has been on for the last year: even now, as I’m trying to figure out how to live with and dress my post-pregnant self, the project of learning to dress — and feel good about — an unfamiliar body is pushing me to experiment sartorially in ways I wouldn’t have though to do.
But really, let’s be honest: when you’re wearing three-inch-heeled red pumps with a round toe, that you can actually walk in, how bad could things possibly be?
- Pre-pregnancy Bootcut Jeans: Kut from the Kloth via Nordstrom
- Scarf: Target
- Rust Slub-Knit Tee: Gap Maternity
- Metallic Loafers: Naturalizer via DSW
- BeBand: BeMaternity (Ingrid & Isabel) via Target
- Brown Die-cut Flats: Lifestride via Zappos.com
- Silver Necklace: gifted
- Orange Draped Top: Olian Maternity
Baby m. needed some extra snuggles, so she decided to join us for these photos. We hope you don’t mind. Incidentally, she turned one month old this weekend. When did THAT happen?
Oh, man. If I had a kingdom, I’d trade it for some clothes with a regular waistband. You know, one with a proper closure. Seriously.
I’m almost-but-not-quite able to wear my pre-pregnancy pants and skirts, including these beloved bootcut jeans. So close, but yet so far: while they button, there’s an unacceptable risk of muffinage. A rubber band and my BeBand make them wearable for low key around-the-house days, but in my non-pregnant state, it seems to take away some of their essential je ne sais quoi as, well, jeans. On the other end of the spectrum, most of my early-stage maternity pants are too large to stay up, which isn’t very practical for someone who spends much of her day on the floor.
So what’s a recently-pregnant gal to do? I’m normally the champion of the theory of buy clothes for the body you have now, but there are limits on that theory: while I’ve (admittedly) stalled out a bit in my post-partum weight loss, I’m determined to get back into shape, and I’d rather not spend a fortune on clothes that I’m hoping won’t fit in [insert appropriate time period here]. Dresses and jersey skirts work well for class and for some of my at-home days, but it turns out, I haven’t yet figured out a way to get by entirely without pants for the truly casual moments I’ve been relishing this fall, including taking baby m. on her first hiking trips to the park.
This is, of course, both a practical problem and a psychological one, requiring some sartorial creativity and some emotional discipline on my part. But help me out, dear readers: how do you dress when your physical form is in a state of flux, whatever the cause? How do you honor both the body and the budget you have today?
Incidentally, I’m taking some of Amy of BiblioMOMia’s great advice on fall trends and the postpartum body from her guest post in these outfits — be sure to take a look at the full list!
Even though I’m [finally!] no longer pregnant, I wanted to wrap up my maternity style chronicles with some of my favorite looks from my last week of pregnancy. Rest assured, I’ll catch back up to the present soon!
Towards the end of my pregnancy, I fought sartorial boredom by reinventing some looks from earlier in my pregnancy, trying to find ways to adjust these styles to take advantage of my slightly-comical shape. In honor of my due date (on which I was very, very much still pregnant!), I took another look at this outfit, the first look from my very first 30-for-30 remix last fall:
It looks a little different now, doesn’t it?
- Skinnies: Gap Maternity
- Navy Tee: Gap Maternity
- Brown Riding Boots: Franco Sarto via Zappos.com
- Red Cardigan: Vintage Michael Kors, mommed
- Necklace: gifted
- Gold Earrings: Lulu’s, gift from Mom
- Metallic Fabric Belt: LOFT
I’m actually pretty fond of the late-maternity version, and not just because of the charming hilarity of attempting to get myself into my first trimester skinnies and those jeans tucked into my boots on what was supposed to have been the last day of my pregnancy. In a number of ways, this version reflects the ways my style has evolved and matured over the last ten months. The accessories are a little more intentional and are a little bit better coordinated. I’m breaking some rules (hello, mixed metallics), and I’m highlighting the things I love best about my shape — even in its temporarily distorted form.
I didn’t end up actually wearing this look all day — after a few hours, it just felt really impractical — but for a welcome-to-town brunch with my parents and my in-laws, it made me feel really put together and like myself, which was worth a lot at this stage in the process!
Have you been able to make a beloved look work in different sartorial circumstances — accommodating a change in shape, lifestyle or circumstance? When you look back at what you were wearing a year ago, how has your style changed — or not changed?
- Long Black Cardigan: Halogen via Nordstrom’s, gift from Mom
- Patterned Tunic: Japanese Weekend, via eBay
- Boot Cut Jeans: Kut from the Kloth, via Nordstrom’s (rubber- and belly-banded)
- Red Pumps: BC Footwear, via amazon.com
- Blue Necklace: Forever 21
With one noted exception (in the form of a seminar paper that has been drafted, but isn’t due in its revised form until June 20), I closed the book on my 2L year this weekend, a result I pretty much couldn’t be happier about. While it’s all been fine, and it’s been a great year in a number of ways, I’m more than ready to be one step closer to JD-ness! Because of the way the timing worked out with my exam schedule and when I needed to start my summer associateship, I actually ended up with a pre-work summer “vacation” of about six hours. As a result, I spent most of the weekend in two states of mind at once, trying frantically to finish my papers and to get ready to start a new job all at the same time.
I wore this outfit to take my last exam on Friday afternoon (during which I pitied, extensively, the poor 3Ls who were there taking a test during the last time slot of the exam period of their last semester of law school). While I’d ordinarily wear something a little more formal, I realized as I was getting ready that it was my last chance at a “casual day” during the week until August, and figured I might as well take advantage! This outfit, though, is an example of iterative, accidental dressing. I had a plan (in theory) that involved wearing this tunic and sweater, but I ended up standing in front of my closet for a while trying on different combinations of pants and heels and necklaces until something stuck. I’m not usually a fan of this approach, but these days, when nothing quite fits the way I expect it to and I wake up most mornings with little to no idea how the demands of my day and the body I have at that second are going to line up, it seems to work relatively well.
Not accidental? My hair, which I had hacked off on Wednesday in preparation for starting work this week. I’ve never really thought of myself as a short hair person, but I think I’m becoming a convert. Something about the precise length to which she cut my hair and the extent to which she’s graduated the back has made cut incredibly easy to style, and I love the breezy feel of hair that’s cut to well above my collarbones for the summertime.
How does your style (clothes, hair, makeup) change for the summer?
- Teal Earrings: Forever 21
- Necklace: Gifted
- Pale Purple Tank: Gap Maternity, via Gap.com
- Boot-cut Jeans: Kut from the Kloth, via Nordstrom’s
- Belly Band (invisible): BeMaternity, via Target
- Studded Flats: kind of ancient Nine West, via DSW
- Cocoon Sweater: vince via Nordstrom’s, gift from Mom
Although we’ve had mostly gorgeous spring weather, we’ve had a couple of deeply regrettable cold, rainy days that more or less made me want to retreat to the comfort of my bedroom and a big warm blanket (you can do that during finals, right?). To the rescue: this sweater, which has magic ties in the back (or the front, if you want to play it that way) that give it some much-needed shape while allowing it to remain the warm snuggly thing that it is. I’m still a little ambivalent about the angling of the sides (what exactly does one wear with something at precisely this length?), but I’m loving the idea that something quite this cozy could look at least borderline polished.
I don’t usually ascribe to the “just pile on the accessories until you feel ready to go out the door” theory. That said, I think the extras here are what save this look from being pretty ho-hum: the enormous earrings, the long necklace, the sparkly flats. And no, these aren’t the ones from the Sigerson Morrison for Target line, though they do look quite similar. I’m not 100% certain of their provenance, but I think I picked them up at DSW in a frantic search for cute flats when my feet were absolutely killing me. Unfortunately, since impulse shopping is not smart shopping, they aren’t quite supportive enough for consistent wear involving lots of walking, but they’re a fun special occasion piece.
I’m back to the library for final preparations for a crazy 48 hour sprint involving two final exams and a draft of a seminar paper, but I’d love to hear your suggestions on how to style this sweater — any thoughts? To those of you still taking and/or grading finals, good luck!
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