Well, I ended up getting pretty busy this month and was unable to keep up with the weekly pacing, but here’s what was going on sartorially for the rest of October!
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CW: Weight, in the closet clean out section.
The month of the witchy outfit, obviously.
Oct 8 – 14
I’ve mostly been doing puff sleeves because they’re just more prractical than trumpet/bell/ruffle sleeves that tend to drag everywhere, but I saw this on Poshmark and noticed the sleeves were actually my size! I love this sweater layered with the sleeveless dress, and I think it’ll be a nice way to add interest with those since I don’t tend to do puff sleeves with them.
Banana Republic merino ruffle sweater via Poshmark size M, Free People “I’m Still Obsessed” dress size S, Leg Avenue snake net tights from Sockdreams (out of stock there currently, but available here), Intentionally Blank “West” boots
The old “I didn’t know what to wear today” outfit.
A vaguely Maleficent inspiried outfit. Can you see it? 👀
Oct 15 – 21
Purrple and orange! With a strong undercurrent of brown in everything to tie it together. I enjoyed the lettuce hem ruffles and the butterfly embroidery for a bit of a girly element.
This is “crunchy casual with a touch of whimsy” if I’ve ever done it.
Athleisure but make it grandma/toddler style.
Oct 22 – 31
Dressed up to enjoy some good old fashioned time at home! I don’t think that lip gloss particularly goes with the more brown toned colors but I wanted something moisturizing and that was within reach. This dress is one of those dramatic stretch cotton deals, although instead of dramatic puff sleeves it has a dramatic ruffle hem and a lace-up front. I still definitely have sweatpants and tank tops for loungewear, but I regret absolutely nothing about also having a small wardrobe of fancy-ass lounge dresses.
A bit of a casual/streetwear vibe with this. These are new joggers from Athleta, and even though I’ve been wearing lurid colored workout wear for a few years now, it still always feels nice and fresh to me to have a legging or jogger option that isn’t black or gray. It didn’t take in the photo, but the ribbed texture is also a fun touch as it almost reminds me of corduroy.
Absolutely amazing print featuring the confluence of many of my aesthetic interests. Unfortunately I can’t really recommend purchasing this as this is my second item of my three lifetime purchases from Threadless that is defective (it got a hole in one of the side seams almost immediately, or came with it. The last tee I bought there in college was sewn with warped side seams) – if you need it in your life I’d consider getting a print or maybe the mug instead.
Birkenstocks not shown here since I was waiting for my pedicure to dry. I really loved the colorful x colorful effect from the tee and the patchwork!
The enamel pin collection continues to grow! I’m not sure I want to have more than three or so on a garment at a time, but I liked these as a playful touch to add some small shapes to the outfit.
Soon to be joined by more cottagecore and fall themed pin friends.
I won second place at our sparsely attended office Halloween costume contest! The wand was sold as a cat toy but I thought a wand sprouting jingly bats would be the best finishing touch to this already pretty whimsical outfit. I was really into the bright happy color palette for a witch look. I’d love to see a larger variety of colors in witch outfits in general! I think the whole cottagecore thing has definitely helped things expand in that direction.
Suited up for the train commute.
Another thing I’d love to see more of – bats that are just chillin’. They need some relaxation too! I also like that this bat burrito shape is a little more subtle and less prone to catching on things.
Simple/casual witch, except for maybe the frog bag. But it’s really his season to shine, being a stereotypical witches’ familiar animal.
Another necklace from The Woods of Wonder. I’m so so so happy I found these again after I misplaced them for several months! The handcrafted matte clay is really easy for me to wear without feeling like I went too glam.
Day before Halloween witch outfit. I did actually walk around the neighborhood like this sans the rubber toad I got from Michael’s clearance (who is named Sir Mortimer, Earl of [redacted street name] courtesy of Izzy‘s suggestion).
Despite the questionable paint quality and slightly lopsided shaping, he is still MAGNIFICENT.
Halloween costume! I was originally just going to rewear the minimal witch outfit above, but I couldn’t help myself and decided to combine it with a butterfly costume from the children’s section at Target to transform myself into a forest witch fairy. The hat is from Amazon and was decorated with faux plants and plastic butterflies from existing apartment decor, the dress is old Forever21, and the boots are the usual docs.
It was quite a haul this month. I got a bonus at work and decided to spend it on some more seasonal pieces and sports bras that were more on the ‘nice to have’ end.
My sizing: 5’1″, currently a US size 10 with a 32DD bust. Approximately a 30-31″ waist and 41″ hips.
Free People Perfect Solution Maxi Dress in Plum Jam, size S – again from the first outfit above. Truly just for fun and unnecessary, but I wore it when we watched the 1931 Dracula at home on a random evening and for me it honestly made the whole experience a ton more fun being able to vibe with these ladies. I’m not sure at what point I made the switch from feeling like dramatic clothes for mundane activities made the clothes feel ridiculous to feeling like the dramatic clothes made the activities more fun, but I’m so glad it happened. I’ve machine washed this on cold and line dried twice already and it seems like it’ll hold up well. The fabric is thicker than on the “Oasis Midi Dress”. The fully ribbed bodice is also slightly more supportive, and while I wouldn’t call it scratchy, it’s not soft either, so I wouldn’t recommend this if you’re sensitive with really textured fabrics.
RosieFerne (Etsy) banana slug enamel lapel pin – a very tiny slug friend. I might specifically try and find another tiny pin, as I think having different sizes will help make wearing multiple pins feel less like wearing a sales display.
Steven Rhodes (via Threadless) “Adopt a Familiar” lightweight sweatshirt size women’s L in smoke gray – shown in Outfits section. One of the collection of ultracasual spooky season stuff. The retro design makes it easier to integrate with athleisure and feels a bit less kitschy than classic/disney/cutesy style Halloween. Of course, I like all those styles, but it’s nice to have variety to bring the spirit of the season into ALL areas of my life 🧙♂️ Again, I was unhappy with the quality of this, but it is easily fixable and I liked the design and fit so I’m keeping it. But keep that in mind if you want to order your own.
Athleta Salutation Rib Jogger in minimalistic gray, size M short – shown in the outfit with the Adopt a Familiar sweatshirt. Fellow shorties will want the petite sizing on this if you don’t want pooling at the ankles. The gray is more of a very pale turquoise in person, and the fabric is soft but leans more towards the slippery technical fabric feeling than fuzzy soft loungewear feel. It does have rather pronounced wrinkling around the crotch area as you move that IMO doesn’t look weird in person, but it does not photograph well.
Eloise Draws (Etsy) Bat and Book gold enamel pin – I’ve been looking for an upside-down bat pin that’s stylized but not too simplified of a style and this one was just adorable! I suppose perhaps the bat is used to reading text on signs and such upside down, so that’s why the book is upside down 🤔 but either way I’m excited to introduce this one to the rest of my pin menagerie. The book it’s reading is “Best Bugs” 🥺🦇
A bunch of stuff from Unique Vintage. – this was a lot, and also more interesting from a style POV than joggers and gray sweatshirts, so I’m going to be doing individual posts on how I personally think about styling these in the near future (I’ve at least drafted up the outfits to photograph already for all of them!). Most of it is pretty autumnal in theme, but I like to wear that stuff year round.
If you want to try these out before I get those posts published, for reference they are the
- Brionne Pinafore dress in pumpkin patch (XS-XL, 1X-5X)
- Green and Dotted Mushrooms Farrow Sweater (XS-XL, 1X-5X)
- Black and Pumpkin Embroidered Bookworm Cardi (XS-XL, 1X-5X)
- Universal Monsters Dracula Crop Tee (XS-3X)
- Boo to You fitted graphic tee (S-2X)
- Brionne Pinafore dress in burgundy (XS-XL, 1X-5X).
I got a size L in everything except the Boo to You tee, which runs large so I got a M for a fit similar to their stock photo model. I think I’d also fit an M in the dracula tee, but I wanted more of an oversized-crop-tee look instead of a ‘baby tee’ fit.
- The pumpkin patch pinafore print is a sort of painted on plasticky situation and not embroidered or part of the fabric directly. Both embroidered sweaters are not lined so they are scratchy on the inside.
- You want to size up on the pumpkin cardigan if you have a larger bust and don’t want it to gap when closed. On me the L just has a very small amount of pulling.
- I love that they give you the measurements of the models and what size they are wearing. This was helpful for figuring out sizing – every single item I ordered fit! Why can’t every store do this? Even better, provide a measurement chart for the measurements of each garment size, not the body they think will approximately fit it. I seriously would love to know why this isn’t more common. Even if a company isn’t positioning itself as particularly sustainable, wouldn’t it save them money to have to deal with fewer returns? And they have the measurements already.
- I returned one item from the order, the Oblong Box Shop brand Halloween Treat fit and flare dress. I got it in size L, but since it doesn’t have a smocked back and is completely non-stretch, it would have required some minor adjustments at the bust for best fit. It wasn’t so off that I wouldn’t wear it outside without alterations, but that combined with stitching that appeared to be coming loose already at some seams and the fact that they cut the bottom of the print off made this one a no. It was a shame because that unsettling circus aesthetic isn’t so common in non-costume items but I couldn’t justify it taking up space in my closet with all those issues, considering it’s not comfy enough for lounging and I can’t wear it to the office.
- This was my first time buying from UV, and I’d say from this large order that the quality varies (e.g. if you’re going to splurge on one thing, something in an intrinsically sturdier fabric like corduroy will likely last you longer than an elaborate/delicate knit piece) but for the tees it’s about on par with Target/Old Navy. You would shop here for a specific seasonal or kitschy item with a design that charmed you and not if you’re optimizing for quality.
Athleta Downtown jacket in decadent chocolate, size petite L – I will also have a standalone post for this (and my thoughts on styling puffers in general), but I was really happy with this. The burgundy-brown color is gorgeous and it has a lot of thoughtful features like the inner cuff layer, flap to cover the top of the zipper, two-way matte colored metal zipper, zip pockets, and extra large pulls on the zipper that will be easy to use when wearing gloves.
I would size up on this from your usual size in Athleta tops, especially if you have wider hips. This is the first puffer jacket I’ve owned that is in petite sizing, and I’m just so happy that the dang sleeves actually fit and I’m not gonna be running around out there like the wacky inflatable tube guy had a child with the Michelin Man.
Athleta Aurora Rib Crop Tank, size M in shasta purple, minimalistic gray, and decadent chocolate – I’m transitioning to wearing more “brami” (bra/cami) tops, which I find a better compromise between underwire bra and no bra than your basic bralette as they are often less flimsy. I like these more than the ambiguous bralette/crop tanks I’ve got from Aerie. The Aerie ones are cuter, but the Athleta tanks are more supportive and feel like they’ll last longer. I’m still happy to wear the Aerie pieces, but value-wise Athleta is the more prudent option.
Athleta Cinch Longline Bra D-DD, size M in sage and flora mauve – I know ideally for sports bras you should be going by band + cup sizing, but for low to medium support I’m happy enough that there is at least tiered sizing at Athleta as I never do high-impact workouts anyway (I stick to hiking, yoga, and ballet).
Although given that they seem to offer both A-C and D+ bras in XS through 3X, I feel like it’s silly to not offer normal bra sizing if they’re doing 8 band sizes already. It’s also a bit disingenuous of them to just say it’s size “D-DD+” instead of just “A-C” and “D-F” because there’s no way someone who is a 32G is going to fit into the M D-DD+ if it comfortably fits me as a 32DD.
At any rate, this was a surprisingly cute style for Athleta. I usually don’t think of them as somewhere to get a flirty workout outfit. The cinched front gives it a nice feminine design, and the cutout is big enough to look intentional but not large enough to be impractical. I think it also works well with the structural design – there’s actually an elastic band around the bust of where the bra would normally end in an inner layer, so the longline part of the top stays put instead of scrunching up. The sage and flora mauve from the fall line are lovely earthy pastels that I think will pair easily with my casual cardigans and jackets in crossover athleisure-casual outfits, and they’re currently on clearance for $29.99 and are still available in XS-XL. I wanted to try making the matching set with the leggings too, but alas they were out of L in the fall colorways.
Athleta Pirouette leotard in flora mauve, size L – if Athleta starts carrying a more extensive women’s dancewear line in their full size range I will be SO HAPPY. Even when I was on the smaller end of a size 8, it was SO frustrating finding dancewear that fit as it tends to run very small and assume you have a flat bust. I haven’t actually worn this into a studio class yet so I’m not sure how it fares with an all out sweat-drenching under dance tights, but from it on and doing some stretching, I was impressed with how supportive this thing was compared to your average basic dance leotard with a shelf bra. The straps are really thick and the fabric edges and seams are finished in a way that doesn’t dig in, and the fabric really hugs your body. After I machine washed it on cold, it did start showing a little bit of pulling in the outer layer of fabric where the bust goes into the strap, which I hope doesn’t get worse, but I’m optimistic about this overall.
Something I returned – the Corduroy Ziggy Overalls from Free People in ‘marsala’ (red). I got this in L, same as the denim ones from this line I have, but I found the fabric was drapier, and the effect was that with the same oversized cut as the denim, it was wrinklier, creating a more saggy-baggy effect than a sort of loose work clothes vibe. The item itself seemed pretty solid, I just didn’t find the oversized effect on this one as sweet – it felt more just sloppy. However if you are taller or slimmer and want a light-medium weight corduroy overall, I’d still say this is worth a look.
Closet Clean Out
I sold another dozen or so items on Poshmark! Notably the size 12 jeans I got at the beginning of this year when I just couldn’t fit anything else. I’m back to the size 10s and I’m really glad I didn’t splurge on multiple new pairs of Madewell jeans there. I would say the main contributor to the size change was getting therapy and Escitalopram for the generalized anxiety I developed over 2020. This resulted in me not stress-eating takeout mac and cheese 3-4x a week. I really wish I had gotten help for that earlier, because waist measurement aside, the quality of life change from not constantly crying and feeling panicked has been GREAT.
Other than that, pieces were mostly fairly minimal style things that I just don’t reach for or don’t fit, as well as a pair of block heeled boots that I was keeping as a backup. I used to wear block heeled boots probably 4x a week, but as my style has become less sleek and I’ve un-acclimated to heels, those are no longer my favorite and I figure that pair is better off being worn instead of in the closet. I think I also puchased those at a time when that slimmer shape of boot was not quite as ubiquitous, and I was worried I wouldn’t be able to find something similar if those wore out.
As I’ve obviously continued to acquire clothing, I’m going to try and list a few more things that aren’t so versatile or actively joy-inducing this weekend.
And the rest
I’ve felt so busy, even though I also feel like I haven’t explicitly taken on more responsibilities compared to the rest of the year. I’m trying out switching to a time-based rather than a task-based model of working on the blog. I don’t often finish blog posts in one sitting, and I find myself putting off writing out final drafts from my notes because it’s frustrating to feel like it’s dragging on. The hope is that I can reframe writing as “wrote for one hour” as a completed task and feel better and create a positive cycle from that. I do enjoy writing here, it’s more to do with avoiding the feeling of “not having done anything” if I can’t finish a post quickly, which I’m trying to work with.
Hope to see you all sooner than later wiith the next post!