We’re almost exactly at the halfway point in this year and I think, whether we are ready to admit it or not, 2020 has changed us all. As jobs, relationships, health and homes have shifted externally, many of us have also been internally examining our priorities, goals and privileges. It’s a lot to process for just 6 months time. And who knows what the next 6 months holds? It feels like we’re in that muddy, middle period. Which is often so uncomfortable. But it also serves as a good check in point so that you can make sure you’re pointed in the right direction for the rest of the year.
When I look back on my resolutions for this year – I wanted to prioritize health and happiness. There have been some obvious stumbling blocks on those fronts – but overall I think I’m still doing my best to make those areas a focus. It’s just that how I achieve both looks slightly different now. With my gym closed for the foreseeable and my commute now consisting of nothing more than the walk from my bed to my desk – I’m taking long walks every morning instead. While work/life balance has been tricky in this time with my job being more demanding than ever – I’m making it a point to go to bed earlier and set hours aside on the weekends to read.
Aside from my resolutions I also make a lower pressure list every year (19 for 2019, 20 for 2020 and so on) that I don’t share here as they’re more personal. Some are totally fun, frivolous things – like see a Broadway show. And some are bigger picture items, such as specific financial goals. This list feels the most out of touch when I look at it now – as so many of the things on it that seemed totally achievable at the start of the year are completely impossible now. They’ve closed Broadway until January 2021 after all! I’m thinking of making a revised list, drafted with our “new normal” in mind?
This year looks nothing like any of us thought it would on January 1st. But on July 1st – we can set intentions, no matter the circumstances – for what the rest of the year might look like. Here’s to braving the unknown and checking a few things off our 2020 lists along the way.
One of my favorite posts these past few seasons has been a “capsule wardrobe” type round-up featuring 10 core pieces, styled 10 ways with my friends at Talbots. A full IGTV try-on video is live on my Instagram now, but I wanted share the photos of each look + outfit details here for reference. These pieces really can be mixed and matched in endless ways and be worn from work to weekend depending on how you style them.
To note: almost all of these pieces are available in petites, regular and plus sizing (sizes 0-24) and I really can’t say enough good things about the quality and the fit. I’m wearing a size 2 or XS in everything except for the pink sweatshirt (size S) and the checked blazer (size 4) as I wanted a bit more room to layer. I’m 5’4″ for reference.
I love this dress – it makes me think of something Betty Draper would wear on a picnic. It’s perfect on it’s own, but on the left is how I’d wear it at the lake house (where it gets cool at night) – with a sweatshirt over top and the belt tied into my hair as a headband.
You all already know how much I love a blazer. This lightweight version in a fun check print is great for the office (where the A/C is always blasting) but cute too on the weekends with a pair of white jeans.
One of my favorite styling tricks is to later a skirt over a dress to make it look like a top. The secret is to pick pieces with similar waistlines and to use a lightweight dress and a fuller skirt so that you don’t add bulk. You practically double your wardrobe this way!
This cute little embroidered berry t-shirt is unexpectedly one of my favorite pieces from the collection. I’ll be wearing this tossed on over a bathing suit, on trips to the farmer’s market and for ice cream dates all summer long.
It’s been a while (I think since New Years Eve of last year to be precise) since I filmed a style video for IGTV and I’d been itching to get back into it. So here we are! I know summer plans are up in the air for now, but you’ll always have use for a simple white t-shirt and a few easy ways to wear it. See the full video on my Instagram here and shop each outfit below.
In general, I’m not a very casual dresser. I don’t wear leggings out of the house unless I’m going to the gym and I never got on board with the whole athleisure trend. It’s not to say I don’t think it looks good on other people, it’s just not me. That being said – one casual piece mixed into with other more classic pieces feels right for a hot summer day. Case in point: these jeans shorts paired with a linen blazer, statement earrings and neutral block heels.
SHOP THE POST:
I’ve always just felt that life (and especially New York) is worth dressing up for. What if you run into an ex? Or a potential boss? Or a reallyyyy pretty West Village street. Dress for the neighborhood you want to live in, right?
In full disclosure, these jeans were Adam’s and were only slightly too small for him so he gave them to me to cut-off (I won’t dwell on the fact that we have nearly the same sized waist…), but pretty much every thrift store in America has a good pair of vintage Levi’s that you could do the same with. I say that because there are an somewhat alarming number of girls on Instagram wearing $150 cut-off jean shorts and raving about how amazing they are. Here’s an alternative.
And while I’m giving out advice – this bag has been one of my favorites since spring and is now on sale. It will be a wardrobe hero straight through fall. I tied on this vintage Liberty London silk scarf that I bought in a nearby vintage shop about 10 minutes before we snapped these photos. Even my bag’s like to dress up apparently.
I’ve been thinking a lot about identity lately. How we define ourselves and how important or unimportant that really is. On a podcast I listen to (Happier with Gretchen Rubin) they recently mentioned how often we “identify” as something but actually aren’t putting in any real work there. For instance, if you call yourself an artist but haven’t actually set aside time to pick up a brush in years. You’ve got to check in every so often and make sure you’re prioritizing the identities that are most important to you.
I identify as a vintage lover, a classic style-type and a sentimentalist – it’s what makes me love holding on to clothes for years. It’s why I don’t find the idea of Rent the Runway’s unlimited program (where you basically borrow clothes to wear and return for a flat monthly fee) very enticing. There’s just no story there. You wear it once and it’s over. And for awhile I felt a bit of pressure that I needed to be wearing/sharing something on the blog that was always buyable. Something new and noteworthy. But nothing in these photos is still available to shop, and I love each of the items anyway. And I want to share them anyway. That’s what feels true to my identity.
To note, if ‘trendsetter’ is an important part of your identity then maybe you’d feel the opposite when it comes to a shopping strategy. And that’s cool too. Just recognize what feels true to you and follow that lead.
It’s why I also re-prioritized reading in my life, travel over more clothes purchases and spending time with Adam, friends and family whenever possible over quite so much work. At the end of the day, I want to be an avid reader, world-traveler, good partner, friend, sister, daughter and Aunt more than a success at Instagram. And it feels nice to remind myself of that from time to time.