Posted in Fashion Fridays

Fashion Friday: All Dressed Up

Okay, okay.  I’m going to be the first to admit how hypocritical this post may seem after yesterday’s post.  But I will remind you that I’m not against the idea of dressing up altogether.  Even though I have just really started to take a fascination with fashion in only the last few years doesn’t mean that I like to present myself poorly.  And I do like dressing up when the occasion calls for it.

That being said, I maintain that my idea of dressing up is different from others’ idea of dressing up.  I’ve never been the type to wear revealing clothes, and I think that is evident through all my dresses.

Also, I may need to reintroduce all of you to my clothing inventory project, which, by taking a quick glance at my blog posts, I haven’t updated since June.  Whoops.  I guess the new year’s as good of a time as any to continue.  Besides, I’ll actually get to use my checkmarks again, and that’s almost always a good thing in my book!

blavatar 2Clothing Inventory to Complete (own all things on list and take pics of them):  Dresses

__2 weekend dresses (for summer)
*Own 0, need 2.  Like, badly.  I really want some fun summer dresses!
blavatar 21 weekend dress (for winter)
Gray sweater dress:  Robbie Bee (gifted).

Who doesn’t love a good sweater dress?  So this may look boring, but this is just one of the ways I styled it, and I love the way it looks and that the dress is so versatile:


blavatar 2 1 evening dress (for summer)

Black dress with purple flowers: connected apparel (thrifted 2010).

blavatar 21 evening dress (for winter)

Black dress with handkerchief hem and taupe flowers:  S.L. fashions (bought at JCPenney 2009)

__1 daytime party dress (for summer)
*Own 0, need 1.

Extras (dresses that I own that are in addition to those on the “you’re covered if…” list):
Okay, fashion readers.  Here’s where I need your help.  Seriously, I didn’t really think I had a lot of dresses.  And I still don’t think I do, compared to others.  In the Lucky manual, it actually lists 4 additional dresses to what I’ve listed here (2 work dresses for summer & 2 work dresses for winter), but I’m not much for wearing a dress to work.  I feel a little uncomfortable in a dress at work; I’m more of a slacks and shirt kinda gal.  I wear skirts to work on occasion, but even that’s pushing my boundaries.  But I do like having dresses in my arsenal.  Problem is, these extra dresses don’t fit into any category listed in my clothing inventory list.  I don’t really know where to wear them; I’ve worn them as being a party hostess, to family dinners, and I think to my birthday party, but they don’t really fit in neatly anywhere because they’re all sort of fall-like–neither winter nor summer.  If you disagree with me, feel free to let me know.  But here they are:


Strappy star-print dress (with POCKETS!!!):  Torrid.
I’m in absolute love with this dress and wear it every day if I could.  I’ve already worn it three different times to three completely different things:  an outing to a movie with friends (casual), our Halloween Housewarming Party (pictured above.  I was the night sky.), and a semi-formal date with the husband.  Once in the summer, once in the fall, and once in the winter.  So I’m not quite sure where to place the dress and whether or not it’s daytime or evening or party or weekend.  It’s quite versatile!

  FF3aFF3 FF4

Leopard-print dress:  MNG by Mango (gifted, but I’m pretty sure it’s from Macy’s, 2012).  Shirt & belt:  Too lazy to look up.  Robot ring:  Charming Charlie (bought 2012).  Turquoise necklace:  ??? (thrifted).
I may or may not have mentioned it before, but it’s my mother that introduces “scandalous/risque” items into my wardrobe.  I’m the prim and proper one, and she’s the one who wants me to sex it up a bit.  The irony is definitely not lost on me.  Anyhow, she had a mischievous little giggle when she handed me this leopard-print number.  I didn’t think I was sassy enough to wear it, but it was a few weeks before my 30th birthday party that I was gifted it, so I thought it would make the perfect “Dirty 30” ensemble.  Because a leopard-print dress is about as dirty as I’m daring to dress.  😉  I know, I know, I’m a coward.  Anyhow, I ran across a website (can’t recall what it is now) that gave tips on how to style leopard print so that it worked more as a neutral than as a wild print.  It suggested pairing it with red, much as you would pair red with anything brown or black and white.  I had fun with this outfit, but haven’t had the courage to wear it out yet.  What do you guys think?  I also want to be able to wear this dress more often, but am still too shy to.  Hopefully I’ll get over it soon.  Again, though, it’s more of a fall item and I can’t figure out which category it fits in.


Black dress:  J.B.S. Ltd. (thrifted 2010).
Ah, the trusty LBD that you can take into any season and any occasion.  Just doesn’t fit neatly anywhere, and that’s okay by me.


Black dress with brown spangles:  R&K Originals (bought 2007??? from JCPenney???).
This dress makes frequent appearances because I think it’s a really neutral dress and I reach for it when I want to throw on something semi-fancy and don’t know what to wear.  It’s been featured at many a Thanksgiving dinner and, most memorably, my own bachelorette party.  I wouldn’t wear it in the summer, but it doesn’t seem like a weekend or party dress, either.  I don’t know.


Dress with blousy top and black skirt:  connected (gifted 2012).
If I wore work dresses, I think this would be my ultimate work dress.  The only problem is I think the top is too provocatively cut.  I do like the way it looks at me, but can’t for the life of me think of a place to wear it.

FF13 FF14

Black/gray/green plaid dress (pattern shown in second picture):  ??? (gifted 2011).
Again, if I wore work dresses, this would be top contender.  But I can’t think of where to wear it right now.  I feel (shocker!) that this is actually much too conservative to be worn anywhere else.


Brown ruched front dress:  elementz (bought at Ross??? in 2007???).
Again, like the brown spangled dress, this is a catch-all dress.  The second picture is of me at my 28th birthday party, but I’ve also worn this to a lot of Thanksgiving and/or Christmas dinners.  I don’t quite know what to do with it otherwise.

Dress I ended up donating:
Brown and white polka dot dress:  American Living (bought at JCPenney 2009).
I was in denial about this dress.  It was a really really cute dress with a retro vibe to it, and for a few years I fooled myself into thinking it looked good on me.  But during my major wardrobe rehaul of 2011, I realized the bust line didn’t hit me in the right place, and the sleeves fit awkwardly on me.  It served me good while it did, but alas, I had to let it go.

What I’ve learned:
*I have entirely way too much black and brown in my dress collection and not nearly enough color!  Shocking for me, as the rest of my wardrobe is filled with bright colors that make me happy.  That needs to change.  Also, I’m due for a good sundress sometime.  The other thing is that I believe little black dresses are overrated.  I would actually love to see a shift to a little (navy) blue dress.  It’s such a flattering color on everyone, and the blue lends itself to be mixed and matched with a variety of great pop colors such as yellow, pink, turquoise, burgundy, or gray.  Those colors with black, while they match, just don’t seem as fun.

Dresses I haven’t worn yet:
Leopard print dress (not in public, anyway);  blousy-topped, black-skirted dress; and black/gray/green “work” dress.  I really want to work up the nerve to wear the leopard print one, and I think I do want to try to wear the black/gray/green work one, but the blousy-topped one, I think I may have to donate.  I just can’t see myself wearing it anywhere, much as I love the way it looks on me.

Final dresses shopping list:
__2 weekend dresses (for summer)
__1 daytime party dress (for summer)

These are the kind I’d want to buy that would fit the bill for the above (I didn’t end up buying the first one because it rode up way too much in the back, and didn’t do the second one because both of the people I tried it on in front of agreed that it didn’t look good on my body type):

Blue floral-printed dress with yellow belt:  Jason Wu for Target.  (On a side, vain note:  my hair looks AWESOME in this picture.  I wish it would look like that more often!)

Multicolored feather print dress with orange belt:  American Living???, JCPenney 2012.

If you’re still reading by now, I’d like to send you a big thank you and hug for letting me indulge in this clothing inventory.  I owe you a big, shiny gold star (and if I know you personally, possibly a coffee or beer or glass of wine)  🙂  .  It feels really good to finally be doing this again, because this is huge on my to-do list and it’ll be a great accomplishment for me when I finally get it all done.  I’ve been wanting to organize and catalog my wardrobe for years.

And finally, if you wish, here are the usual questions to answer:

1)  What is your favorite dress out of the above?  Your least favorite?  (As in, do you have any “what was she thinking?!?” impressions of any of the above?)

2) Aside from what is noted above that I need to add to a shopping list, is there anything glaringly missing from my collection?  Is there anything you would suggest to round out/compliment what I already have?

3) After seeing the pictures, do you think I’ve miscategorized anything?

4)  Do you have dresses that are strictly for the fall or spring?  And if so, how do they differ from winter or summer dresses?  Or do you think every dress you own should be able to span all four seasons?

5) Do you think any of these dresses are out of place in my wardrobe (i.e., does one or more dress(es)) not fit the fashion profile/personality of the others)?

Hoping You’re Making Good Progress on Getting a Big Item Crossed Off Your To-Do List Too!  🙂

Posted in Ta-Da! Tuesdays

Ta-Da! Tuesday: $4 Date Night!

I have to confess right off the bat that this isn’t going to be the normal “Ta-Da Tuesday” post, where I show off a recently-completed craft or recipe.  That will have to wait until next week, because I think what the hubby and I pulled off today definitely deserves a Ta-Da!  🙂

As you may or may not know, we’re in the middle of purchasing a house.  (Literally.  We just had the inspection, drew up some contingencies, and are waiting for word back from the sellers about it.  So please keep your fingers crossed for us!  We’re getting close!)  As you also may or may not know, buying a house is expensive (unless, of course, you get a super-cheap house, but you get what you pay for).  Not that we really had extra money to spend before, what with me looking for a job and all, but now that we’re using the money we DO have for a down payment, credit card spending is strictly forbidden.  And we’ve been doing a really good job about that because we really love this house and want to do the least damage possible to our (extremely good on both counts!  *patting self on back*) credit scores so that we don’t accidentally shoot ourselves in the foot and not be able to afford this house.

So when my mother gave us $20 spending money because she took pity on the fact that we’ve been living on Top Ramen and mac ‘n’ cheese to make this all work, we thought long and hard about how to spend it.  We got some much-needed coffee before speaking to our real estate agent, and the hubby bought himself new razors (trust me, this was a necessary thing; his face was starting to get scratchy!).  With the leftover money, we decided to check out the $2 movie theater nearby that plays movies that are in that lovely in-between stage where it’s not in full-priced theaters anymore but haven’t been released on DVD/BluRay yet.

Now, there are three reasons for this feat being Ta-Da-worthy:
1)  I can’t remember the last time we’ve been on a date where we’ve spent money.  Not that this is extremely important to either of us, but every once in awhile, it really is nice to treat yourself.  So the fact that we were spending money on being together felt pretty incredible.

2)  We had a full-blown date for only $4!  On Tuesdays, movie tickets are only $1, and hot dogs were only $1, so

 X 2
 X 2
$4, which also illustrates
3) I had a reason to dress up, which I haven’t done in a very, very long time!  So we weren’t going to a jazz club, fancy restaurant, or musical.  I was far and away the most dressed up person in the whole laidback movie theater, but I didn’t care.  I was on my first date in months and by golly, I was going to gussy up!!!  😀

Accessory List:
Two-tone dolphin clasp bracelet:  (gifted).
Purple floral hair pins:  Charming Charlie (bought 2012).
Purple tiered earrings:  Target (bought 2011).
Purple square-stone necklace (I’m pretty sure it’s not a real stone):  (gifted).
Purple floral ring:  Pier 1 Imports (bought 2011).
Black sheer scarf/shawl:  (gifted).
Purple owl pin:  (handmade & gifted).
*If you can’t tell, purple is my favorite color.  But I also happened to love how purple looks with yellow.

Purse:  Red by Macy’s (gifted).

Top:  Worthington (bought at JCPenney 2012).
Pleated colorblock skirt:  H&M (thrifted!  such a score!)

Black & gray plaid shoes:  Madden Girl (thrifted).  These may be my most absolute favorite thing I’ve ever bought from a thrift store.  I am in love with these shoes!
3 reddish spots on back leg:  Stupid bug bites (outside, hopefully).

Out of all the movies we had to choose from, Dark Shadows seemed to be the one that we would both enjoy.  (Hubby and I have vastly different tastes in the movies we’re normally gravitated to.  He’s more sci-fi/action, I’m more rom-com/anything Pixar).  I admit, I’ve never actually seen the TV series that the movie is based on, so I watched the preview blindly and thought it would be somewhat of a dark comedy, like Edward Scissorhands (yet another Depp/Burton collaboration) or a vampire version of Encino Man (oh, Brendan Fraser, you’re such a cutie pie).  So I went in looking for a laugh.

Oh, how incredibly wrong I was!  Though there were a few laughable moments, it was much creepier and darker than I thought it was going to be.

Me & the hubby acting out some of the scary parts of the movie.  We’re much, much less scary!!!
*Spoiler Alert!!!  Spoiler Alert!!!*
I’m quite the scaredy-cat to begin with, so seeing a ghostly figure fall from a chandelier over and over again screaming “Help Me” and watching paintings bleed, among other creepy scenes, gave me the serious heebie-jeebies.  It’ll definitely be hard to get to sleep tonight.  I’m watching copious amounts of Gilmore Girls to try and keep my mind off of it.  (*Side note:  Oh my gosh!  Seriously, AS SOON AS I WROTE THIS, a scene appeared on Gilmore Girls where Sookie is mentioning a TV episode of Dark Shadows.  I swear I didn’t plan that.  At all.  In fact, I completely forgot that Dark Shadows was even ever mentioned in this show.  Shocker, I know.)

Anyhow, it was an alright movie (I’d probably give it a 7 out of 10), just not what I thought it was going to be.  But all in all, it was great to be able to spend a night with the hubby.  🙂

Do you have any great money-saving stories that you’re proud of?  Seen any good movies lately?  (We plan to see Hunger Games next when that comes to the theater.  I know, I know.  We just might be the only people in the U.S. who haven’t seen it yet[see strapped for money, above], but we’re quite excited about it.)  Am I weird for thinking Brendan Fraser is cute?  😉

Sweet Dreams (for both you and me)!!!