Outfits July 17 – August 16 2019

All aboard the giant blog post! πŸš‚πŸš‹πŸš‹πŸš‹ Outfits from the past 31 days, though not 31 outfit photos because I’ve been on a bit of a break. I’m back on daily pics now, though.

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Pasting one of my favorites from this month up here so it shows up as the header photo

Post formats

I’m trying to decide what to do with these outfit dump posts. I already post all my outfits to Instagram along with thoughts on styling them so I don’t like it to become too repetitive. I was thinking of switching to posting them on the blog once a week, but I feel that doesn’t give the proper perspective that makes it worth the extra effort of posting outfits on a third platform (the other being r/femalefashionadvice’s WAYWT threads). I guess we’ll see. There is definitely learning value to revisiting the same outfits, but on the other hand, it takes a lot of time.

What sorts of things do you all like to read about in “what I wore” outfit posts? Are you interested in everything I wore or just hits and misses? Would you rather see posts dissecting a particular outfit type or discussion on specific styling detail instead?

New photo look

In other news my partner and I rearranged our living room space, so I have a different photo spot now. It isn’t as visually clean, which is a bummer because I liked the really clear background before, but I prioritize having a more livable furniture arrangement than an insta-perfect background.

I also got a Pixel 3a smartphone. My intention is to use it as a camera-Instagram machine, so the budget Pixel with the unlimited storage option made the most sense. I might do a separate post on it later once I’ve been using it for a few weeks, but for a first impression the camera is indeed leaps and bounds better than the one in the iPhone SE when it comes to picking up textures and working in low lighting. The image processing seems a bit aggressive though and I feel like the colors tend to get a blue tint. I was also appalled to find out that they turn on airbrushing effects on selfies by default. I get it, but also that just seems pretty slimy and disingenuous. The emoji are also hideous compared to the Apple and Facebook renderings but you can’t win em all.

I got an unlocked Pixel (not attached to a data plan) so I will continue to use my iPhone for most other purposes. I figured since I take so many photos for Instagram with my fashion account, personal account, and contributing to the official account of the local science museum I could basically treat it as just having a separate camera. Phones have come a long way and I don’t intend to make poster sized prints of any photos I take anyway, so I’m not interested in getting a proper camera and putting more steps between taking a photo and editing it and getting it online.

Anyway, outfits:

July 17

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An ancient Old Navy field jacket // H&M crop top // Amazon celestial sequin tulle skirt // Dr Martens 1460 boots

A pretty classic contrast styling for docs. I wore this to do some blogging and “online errands” at a local cafe.

A lot of times I’m honestly not sure how out of touch I’ve come from the reality of what gives a weird impression to the average person, clothes-wise. As much as I enjoy being creative with outfits, it is important to me that I don’t come off in the manner of an “it’s not a phase, mom, it’s who I really am” teenager, singularly out of date (i.e. looking like I cluelessly got left behind in 2010 vs incorporating dated items in an intentional manner), or just like I wore random things. I guess this could go either way re: the cringey teenager look. For Berkeley I suppose this isn’t actually that off kilter.

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Banana Republic trench coat (Goodwill, sleeves are hemmed) // Anthropologie eyelet blouse // Forever 21 faux leather midi skirt // Halogen pointed-toe flats

Changed into this to go out in the evening in SF. I used to really love these flats, but I feel that they go best with fitted long pants or a shorter skirt with tights which aren’t silhouettes I wear much these days. They cut the feet off pretty abruptly and it doesn’t make for a particularly flattering leg line.

I did like the goth lite aesthetic in this outfit overall. The length of the trench isn’t ideal for midi skirts, but I don’t have space for 4 jacket lengths in different fabric weights and formality and this was the least-bad outerwear match for the polished look I was going for.

July 19

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Old Navy field jacket // old swim team t-shirt from high school (contrary to popular belief, this is not one of those Uniqlo tees) // Madewell “perfect vintage jean” // Birkenstock “Mayari” sandals

An easy casual sort of outfit I wore to work. It’s one of those tricky outfits that I like better with a belt when worn sans outerwear, but without a belt with the jacket on. I like the visual weight the belt adds to the base layer outfit, and the more continuous line of the inner outfit when the jacket is on. Whenever I get around to repeating this one, I think I’ll leave the belt out.

As usual, it doesn’t look bad, just not as good as it could be.

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Another tangent: I was at Uniqlo and decided to poke around their t-shirt section to look at the Hosukai line which a lot of people assume this t-shirt is from (it has the same Great Wave print on it). I love traditional Japanese woodblock print art and was interested in potentially getting another shirt with a fine art print, but it turns out they use a slub-knit fabric and align them so that the fabric direction is diagonal instead of level. It looked really cheap to me, which was a shame because the prints are so cool πŸ˜•

July 20

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I really liked this outfit, it’s definitely a poster child for the whole “storybook style” thing I’m trying to do. It has a lot of elements I like including

  • having a button-down top and skirt
  • some structured elements without feeling too formal or stodgy overall
  • a matchy color scheme
  • ambiguous vintage vibes
  • generally very cute though not quite feeling childish (moto jacket, lipstick, heavy shoes make it lean older)

Sometimes I think about what twee has become, or whether it’s something that’s always going to be associated with the ~2008-2012 era (seriously, 500 Days of Summer came out over a decade ago???).

I guess I could think of it the same way that I’d think about another style that has strong connections to a particular era, like hippie style. You can do a cosplay hippie outfit, but you can also distill down some of the visual elements or key pieces and wear them in a modern way. I think it could be fun to try and do a post on modernizing styles that have a strong association with a particular time period.

Also, I occasionally get comments on outfits similar to this one mentioning they give off a “Miyazaki heroine” vibe. As of last weekend I have now seen a grand total of three Miyazaki films so that is starting to make more sense (and what a great compliment that is!).

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New Look petites faux leather moto jacket // Urban Outfitters velvet dress (consignment) // Topshop snake buckle purse // Vero Monte herringbone fishnet tights (Amazon) // Dr Martens x Hieronymus Bosch 1460 boots

I wore this to my friend’s birthday party, which was rainbow themed. Each guest was assigned a suggested color to dress in to try and balance the color ratios. I was assigned pink, but I didn’t have a pink dress or top and wanted to go for a full-outfit color so I went with yellow.

I think this might be the second time I’ve worn this dress outside my apartment but I keep it around for times like this! Sometimes there is a party and then you want something that’s loud and hard to wear casually. This dress is simple and flattering enough that I think it could earn its keep as a once-a-year party staple for a while.

The dress is pretty great but I was really happy to bust out the Bosch boots too. A truly fun day for personal fashion.

One thing I’ve noticed I don’t see very often is dresses that have enough material in the skirt to actually drape/flare out generously like in this piece. I feel like most of the mall fashion tier A-line-ish shaped skirts just barely have enough fabric to count as A-line and not bodycon/straight, and a lot of the time it feels more like a cost-saving choice rather than a creative design choice. By contrast I always feel so luxe when I have this on.

July 22

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Banana Republic trench (Goodwill, sleeves are hemmed) // Anthropologie top // Madewell jeans // MIA clogs

Another casual fit, not much to say here aside from I think this would have looked better without the belt. The belt loops on these pants are unusually wide, so the belt tends to sit more towards the hips than natural waist. The effect with this belt is to visually emphasize the slightly wide part of my torso rather than the natural waist and while it doesn’t look terrible I think it would have been more flattering without it. In retrospect the earrings lipstick, heavy shoes, and square neckline are enough to give the outfit structure even without the trench.

July 23

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Christopher Banks linen blend shirt (Goodwill) // IDLF x Uniqlo skirt (eBay) // MIA clogs

Another pretty standard look for me with the earth tones, midi skirt, and ever-present clogs. I still don’t feel very “me” in this button-down top. It’s just too boxy for my taste. There are some times when I feel that a look needs a casual button down so I still keep this one around and occasionally attempt to incorporate it in other looks, but I’ve noticed I’m never thrilled with the outfit.

July 24

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Anthropologie top // Uniqlo midi skirt // H&M tote // MIA clogs

This top got a lot of use in the last month or so. I’ve been keeping an eye out for similar blouses but it seems that this stretch and comfortable yet fitted (it has princess seams!) top with a square neckline that is neither so modest it may as well be a crew neck nor so revealing that it does not accommodate standard bra straps is some kind of unicorn shirt.

I’d been thinking of this color combo as a sunflower outfit because I love sunflowers but one day I had the thought “hey, this is the same color combo you see in those yellow cigarettes that are always littered everywhere” and I cannot get that out of my head. I’m hoping that eventually will pass, but I’m a bit skeptical because it’s very “don’t think of an elephant.” I wore my bee earrings and the round textured bag for extra sunfloweriness here. I know it’s a silly thing that probably 99% of people wouldn’t immediately jump to, but I’m really hating my brain right now for ever coming up with that in the first place.

July 29

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Madewell sweater // Madewell jeans // H&M tote // MIA clogs

I tried to style this sweater which I usually get really aggressive autumn/winter vibes from in a more summer-fall transition look. I dig it. I lowered the jeans cuffs a little bit (I usually wear my jeans at a slightly cropped length) to give more area in the outfit to the jeans to keep up with the more voluminous top.

July 31

(recycled photo)

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Old Navy cotton cable-knit cardigan (Goodwill) // BP linen camisole // Uniqlo cotton linen relaxed pants // Birkenstock “Mayari” sandals // Gap belt

I think at this point this is the full outfit which I’ve repeated the most. It totally hits a lot of points in my personal style preferences and is just extremely wearable.

Tangent: One thing I really admire about @shellsinshoes is that while almost every piece she owns is a statement piece and many are designer items, almost all her outfits have a really grounded feel, like you could run for the bus in them. I aspire to someday distill my own style ideas into that kind of high-fashion practicality.

August 01

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Banana Republic trench (Goodwill, sleeves shortened) // Classic Elements petite ribbed t-shirt (Goodwill) //Β  IDLF x Uniqlo pleated corduroy button-front midi skirt // MIA t-strap platform clogs

This has become another go-to outfit. Easy to wear and checks all the boxes. One of the reasons I like these corduroy midi skirts so much is that with all the fabric weight, I never feel like I have to worry about them blowing around going up and down the stairs to the train.

This striped tee was an impulse buy from Goodwill and I am so glad that I went with it. It’s great with jeans and the multicolored stripe is so cheery (it’s hard to see at a distance, but it’s two shades of green and a brown over a white rib-knit). The stripe gives it enough visual weight to hold up to more structured pieces like this skirt. I’ve tried this skirt with thinner solid color tees and it always feels unbalanced.

August 02

(recycled photo)

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Anthropologie top // Uniqlo culottes (hemmed) // H&M tote // MIA clogs

August has really been a month of taking advantage of old outfits and outfit formulas.

August 03

(recycled photo)

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San Diego Hat Co straw hat // Urban Outfitters peter pan collar shirtdress // Birkenstock “Mayari” sandals // H&M tote

I think that weekend I was just going to the grocery store, but the weather was nice and I didn’t want to pass up an opportunity to wear this ultimate summery look.

August 09

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Anthropologie eyelet blouse // Flea market belt // Topshop corduroy pleated peg pants // Marc Fisher patent leather pointed toe lace-up boots

I was pretty surprised that I hadn’t worn this top/bottom combo before, but I think it’s because I mentally lump in the corduroy trousers with cooler weather clothes and the eyelet blouse with hot weather clothes so I don’t usually have them in my head at the same time. I really loved how all the rich textures work together here. It’s a bit of a pirate vibe but I like how the fringe earrings soften it a bit. Definitely bringing this outfit back!

August 10

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The July 20 look returns, but without the suede jacket because it was hot.

August 11

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Another “Really? I haven’t worn this before?” outfit.

August 12

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Banana Republic shirt (consignment) // ASOS petite jeans // Birkenstocks

This is more of a casual weekend loungewear top for me because it’s a bit too large (mostly in the shoulders), but I felt like wearing something easy and the bolder ridge-stitch texture in this adds a little oomph to what would be more of a “fashion is not a priority in my life” vibe if I wore a random normal thin t-shirt with these jeans and sandals. I’ll leave my house wearing anything during the weekend, but I do prefer to have something at least a little intentional looking on for the office.

August 13

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Go-to warm weather combo ft retro casual vibes makes another appearance, sans trench coat.

August 14

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Souvenir t-shirt from the American Ballet Theater // Madewell jeans // MIA clogs

Another basic tee and jeans fit. I think it could have been improved with a headband but it’s solid as it is. While t-shirt outfits seem like they should be the easiest, I’ve had to ease back into them after deciding to make outfits a hobby because I feel since there is so little going on, you have to pay more attention to hair and makeup and the cut of your items if you’re fussed about it being a look and not just clothes you’re wearing.

I think a well-fitted, on-trend pair of jeans and footwear that is a bit of a statement go a long way in making random old t-shirts look good. It was such a huge pain but I’m really glad I took the time to find this particular pair of blue jeans (see Jeans Shopping is Terrible: A Comparison of 12 Pairs of Madewell and ASOS Jeans for more details).

(It think doesn’t need to be said, but still: obviously you don’t have to shoot for instagram-worthy outfit-outfits every day, but this is a fashion blog so)

I am really not sure what happened to this photo. It’s so low-res! Not sure if it’s Instagram downgrading the photo on upload (I swear it does that sometimes) or some weird fluke of the slight filter I applied (I apply about a 20% strength “Rise” Instagram filter to most of my photos to compensate for lighting inconsistencies) to this particular image or what.

August 15

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Old Navy scoop neck tee // Uniqlo “cotton linen relaxed pants” // MIA clogs // Gap belt

I’d been meaning to buy some medium sized clear hair elastics to deal with flappy belts, but I still haven’t gotten to that. I decided to just tuck the end of the belt in this day and while I would have preferred a belt of the correct length, I don’t think it looks bad! I think it looks less jank than it would with a standard belt because the braided pattern feels a bit rope-y and more casual to start with.

I’m pretty sure that at one point this was my favorite outfit combo. While I still like it, I’m definitely not feeling it as much due to my growing distaste for “blah” items like this thin scoop neck top. Though part of it might also be that I gained a few pounds and haven’t been working out as heavily in recent weeks so it might be a slight difference in how the top is laying on my arms etc.

August 16

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Props if you’ve made it all the way down here. Didn’t have too much new happening fashion-wise this time, but it’s nice to have settled into a spring-summer rhythm. Rather than feeling like I’m in a rut, I’m pretty happy that I have a couple of combinations in my wardrobe that have been easy to throw on. Wasn’t that the primary goal of starting out on the wardrobe overhaul in the first place? I still don’t feel like I’ve achieved my best self in terms of style so I’m still always thinking about clothes, but despite all the continuous criticism I give most of my looks I am pretty happy with how stuff comes out generally

For real though, these some outfits that are more typical of what I was wearing around this time last year:

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I mean, it wouldn’t make anyone look twice, but definitely not as sharp as my average outfit now. A lot more pajama vibes going on. Are you still figuring out how you like to dress for warmer seasons or have you had that down for a while? If you think of your wardrobe as a personal project, do you try and try new styles each year or are you aiming to get to more of a personal uniform?

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