Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A few more thoughts

I have loved getting dressed every day since I finished my project! I have a catalog of all of my clothes in my head now so it's easier to think about what I like and what I think looks good on me.  I have never thought of myself as a fashionable person, but I do care about what I wear and would like to become more fashionable. In the past year or so, I've been filling out my wardrobe and incorporating new pieces, and this blog was the perfect way for me to see what works and what doesn't, as well as what is missing from my wardrobe. 

Everyone's wardrobe is a work in progress, but here are a few things that I have learned from working on this project:
One of the most important elements of an outfit is the fit! You could have the prettiest dress, but if it's too big or too small, it won't be a good look, regardless of how you style it.
I no longer need to steer away from trends. In the past, I would ignore them because I didn't want to spend the money on something that might not last, but I've learned that If I actually like them, I shouldn't stop myself from picking them up at an affordable price. Leggings, skinny jeans, riding boots--they're been around for a while now, and it takes years for them to go from a Do to a Don't.

Shoes, accessories, and coats should not be an afterthought! They can make or break an outfit. 

I wore my wedding dress twice this year, but this may not have been the best idea because now there is a purple mark on it.  Perhaps from when the foosball controller poked me at Gill's Halloween party?

And a visual representation of my biggest take-away, which is that skirts are always more exciting than pants:

I am very excited about some pieces I received for Christmas and from the outlets in Rehoboth, Delaware the day after Christmas. The Banana Republic outlet was having an incredible sale when I was there! I'll try to share some of those looks with you, but I am still not sure how I'll be at braving the weather for outdoor outfit shots in the winter. I'm also getting nice and comfortable with my routine of leaving the house after Dave in the morning, leaving me without a photographer.

Happy New Year, and thanks for keeping me company in 2011!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

For the Lazy Lady in All of Us

Hopefully you don't remember the wrinkles on the gray dress that I wore back in September.  It wasn't the wrinkliest outfit I've ever seen, but it wasn't exactly a proud moment.  Take a look at what the dress looked like in the beginning:

Enter Downy Wrinkle Releaser spray.  The good folks at Downy sent me a bottle (along with another spray to use the next time I iron...which might be never), and I immediately knew which dress I would use to test the spray.  With a few spritzes, I let the dress hang overnight. I never took the iron out of the closet, because as you should remember, I only like to iron when I'm on business trips.  When I woke up and put the dress on, I found that it was significantly less wrinkled.  I like this experiment a lot better than the one I did in fifth grade that involved carnations and glycerin; this one has a practical implication and I am thrilled to see that with a few sprays, I can turn ridiculous into presentable.  My science teacher mom should be proud.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Look Back at Some Favorites

Now that I've worn all of my clothes, I want to share a round-up of some of the pictures that have made me the most happy over these past few months.  In some cases, it's because I felt good and would like to wear the outfits again; other times the pictures take me back to a great time I had in that outfit.  I anticipate that this post will help reinspire me if I am having trouble picking out an outfit in the future. As someone who has always said that I don't know what my style really is because I'm just used to buying what looks good and is on sale, I think this will be a big step in helping me see a theme and understand what it is that I really like to wear.  My closet will always be a work in progress, but now I have cleaned out what I didn't want to wear and added in some essential pieces that I love, so I'm excited to see what I'll wear next!
Pretty dress

Match the scenery

Favorite new sweater

A little chic with my casual

A few favorite pieces

Can I live like this forever?

A statement vintage purchase

My favorite skirt and boots, now with a favorite shirt

Comfortable but presentable

Fun details

Finally styled a black shirt

At Woodberry Kitchen

Mixing it up

Looks like fall!

Orchard fun with my photographer husband

Monday, November 28, 2011

Day 143: This is it!

After 143 days, I have worn all of my clothes! If it's in my apartment and it's wearable, it has been on my body at some point since July 6, 2011. The project didn't take as long as I had expected, especially when you consider that the first way I envisioned the blog is that I would wear all of the clothes I could for a year, and then give away everything I didn't wear in that year. But I wore lots of items, whether I love them or don't know why I own them, or somewhere in between.  Thanks to everyone who has read along or listened to me strategize and analyze the project as I went along. I appreciate the blog comments more than you realize--I love learning what your favorite pieces of my wardrobe are. It definitely helps me as I plan what to buy next! A big thanks to Steph K. for being a big blog and real life supporter, who really encouraged me to start a blog in the first place. And of course, this blog would have no pictures if it weren't for my husband Dave, who wants to keep taking pictures even though the clothes I'm wearing now have been on this blog already (Day 2, in fact. I missed that dress.).  I know I didn't win a Grammy, and this isn't even your favorite blog, but I had a lot of fun and it is the season of gratitude, you know. So thank you, thank you, and thank YOU!

You haven't seen the last of me! I will be back when I get new clothes, and probably also when I wear outfits that I want to share and remember. I also have a few round-up posts planned so you can look back on my favorite outfits of the past 5 months, as well as the pieces that I have gotten rid of as a result of this evaluation.  Stay tuned!

Sweater: Banana Republic
Hat: Urban Outfitters
Scarf: Gift from Steph Consoli, from U.O.

Day 142: Champagne Cocktail

And as the first stage of the The Everything Project wrapped up, I got a haircut! I should have done this months ago, but I always try to grow my hair long until it gets too unhealthy and I need to get it chopped again. I promise to get regular haircuts in a timely manner from now on.  The weather outside has been incredible lately, and for that, I am very thankful.  But the sun has been setting early, and by the time I was dressed for our friends Steph and Dave's party on Friday evening, the sun had set. The good thing about that is you get to see this cranberry champagne cocktail, which is very delicious. Steph and Dave sure know how to entertain, and we had a great time.  Photo quality is the price I pay for the early sunset, though.  I had planned for this to be my final outfit of the project until I receive or purchase new clothes, but I found a sweater of mine on Dave's side of the closet on Friday.  The project lives on! 

Dress: Theory
Cardigan: H&M
Shoes: Nine West via TJ Maxx

Day 141: Happy Thanksgiving!

Way back in 2008, the Phillies were awesome. As a life-long fan, the excitement and surprise at their talent was unfamiliar and the best feeling ever. In one play-off game the next year, when we were still feeling good, the Phils were down and nerves were high, when Ryan Howard came to the plate and saved the day with a double. The legend is that he was in the dugout, ready to deliver a game-winner, and told his teammates, "Get me to the plate, boys." And that quote was great, because it worked. So then Dave gave me this shirt for my birthday, and when I wore it--in the middle of my birthday party--the Phils lost to the Giants and the season was over for the good guys.  You may remember that Ryan Howard was particularly asleep at the plate. And he's been in a slump ever since. So while this shirt was once awesome, now it is just sad, which is why it is now my Thanksgiving shirt. Thanksgiving with Dave's family is casual, and there were plenty of boys there, so it made sense to me!

Tee: Gift from Dave
Red shirt: Betsy's
Chinos: Banana Republic
Jacket: Gift from Mom, Old Navy
Shoes: Converse via TJ Maxx

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Day 59: Playing Ketchup*

As I've mentioned before, I didn't photograph every single outfit I wore during the duration of this wardrobe challenge. Many casual tops have their place, which is not in front of the camera. I did make sure to take at least one picture each day for the past 5+ months, though.  On Day 59, that outfit was this Lilly dress, which I wore to a wedding.  But dresses are important and blog-worthy, so even though I didn't get a picture of it then, I want to let you know that I wore this one to have lunch and a beer with Danielle and her boyfriend in Baltimore on that September day. I was planning on wearing it to the wedding, styled with black peep-toes and a skinny black belt, but I just didnt feel like it. So I changed into the crab dress, which I had been intending to wear to brunch the next day, which is why I stopped at Target the next morning and picked up this purple dress.  Yes, it's very difficult being this fickle.

Dress: Banana Republic

*And yes, I did get ketchup on this dress, which is another part of the reason I didn't wear it to the wedding. The stain has since disappeared.

Day 140: Lindsay from the block

Happy Thanksgiving Eve! Are you going out in your hometown tonight? My hometown doesn't have a bar, but I do know where to go if I wanted to find everyone who went to my high school.  Instead, I'll be out in Philadelphia tonight, where anyone I bump into will be from more recent years of my life. Then tomorrow morning Dave and I will head to his cousin's house up on the mountain in Maryland for a meal with his family.  With family in Maryland and New Jersey and us in Pennsylvania, we're generally able to spend time on or around the holidays with each side. I know we're pretty lucky!

A special shout-out to Mom and Old Navy for this one:
Bag, Top, Jacket, and Headband: Gift from Old Navy, from Mom
Earrings: Gift
Pants: Target
Shoes: Nine West via Macy's

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Day 139: Snuggly weather

Since my work week ends at 3 pm on Wednesday this week, I got myself out of bed on this dreary morning by telling myself it's like 10 am on any other Thursday. Convoluted, for sure, but at 8 am on Tuesday, there are the same amount of hours remaining left in my week as there would be at 10 on Thursday. Hey, it got me up on a day with perfect snuggling weather.

My mom gave me this jacket (and a similar black one) as an early Christmas present since all of my coats and jackets are either puffy or long, or both.  I've been needing a shorter, easy-to-wear jacket. I was hoping these might work as indoor jackets to complement an outfit, but if this one is any indication, it may be more of a jacket to protect against the weather.  Next time, I'll wear gloves!
Jacket, skirt and shoes: Old Navy
Top: Gap
Tights: Urban Outfitters
Bag: Target

Monday, November 21, 2011

Assess the Dress

As I analyzed my wardrobe over the weekend, I found 3 dresses that I haven't yet worn since way, way before July 6, 2011. I like them, but I have no idea when I would wear them.  I'm not attending my company's holiday party this year, and I don't think I would have worn any of these even if I were.  I don't anticipate wearing them to any of the weddings I attend next year. So this is what it's all about: I gave these dresses away. They're currently in my sister's possession since she has singing performances and more opportunites for dressing up, and until she donates them, I could technically take them back if I find a time that I would like to wear them. But I want to know what you think. Do you think I should keep any of these dresses? Would you like to see me wearing any of them this holiday season?
Green dress: Was Betsy's, maybe from Francesca's?? Wore it in 2009 for a Theta reunion

Black dress: Very old, Not sure where I got it.  Last wore it for a Christmas party in 2007

Red dress: David's Bridal. Wore as a bridesmaid in Denise & Dan's wedding in 2009.
Happy almost anniversary, friends!! 

Day 138: Thanksgiving week

 I bought this tank top a few weeks ago, and while I normally would've stuck it under the bed until next spring, the project means I wear it now.  I'm really excited to wear it when the weather gets warm: the print is pretty and I love the colors, and the criss-crossed back is fun and classy.  I can foresee plenty of opportunities for wearing it with a blazer at work or with some jeans for play. In these days of particular gratitude, I am thankful for clearance racks!

Sweater, boots and bag: Old Navy
Tank: Anthropologie
Skirt: Goodwill
Necklace: Gift from Dave
Tights: ??

Day 137: Winery Finery

Ever since some nonstick cooking spray fell out of the cabinet and onto my right foot two weeks ago, it's been pretty painful to wear heels. If it keeps up for much longer, I'll have to go to a doctor about it, but I'm hoping this foot/toe injury will heal itself.  In the meantime, I'm only wearing heels to sit at my desk and am focusing on sneakers, boots, and flats the rest of the time.

On Sunday, Dave and I went with my parents and our nephew Josh to the Renault Winery for brunch.  I wore the dress that I wore as a bridesmaid in my sister-in-law's wedding.  It was a little dressy for a brunch buffet, but I'm definitely keeping it and don't have a whole lot of fancy dress-wearing occasions planned yet for this holiday season.  The day of Rebecca's wedding, I started to iron the sash belt on this dress, and I melted a hole right through it! Luckily, with a sewing kit from the front desk, I was able to cut out the burned parts and stitch the rest of it back together with room to spare so it still ties in the back. You can't even tell what happened!

Dress: Anthropologie
Tights: Gift from Dave or Mom (I don't like buying them for myself)
Flats: Candie's via Famous Footwear
Bracelet: Gift from Rebecca

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Day 136: Everyone Loves a Theta Girl

Is it just a coincidence that when I babysat for a few nine-year-old girls in the neighborhood this weekend and explained what a sorority is, they came downstairs wearing togas a few minutes later? I promise that I focused on the friendship and volunteering aspects, and said nothing of fraternity parties. I didn't even mention the Greek connection, but they dressed up like Aphrodite and Demeter, and the little brother was Hercules. I think I was Hera. 

Cardigan: Old Navy
Shirt: Kappa Alpha Theta, Kim's design!
Jeans and Sunglasses: Gap
Shoes: Nike via Famous Footwear

Friday, November 18, 2011

Day 135: Toasty

Can you tell I really like these yellow leaves? I'll be sad when they finally get cleaned up.  I picked up this sweater recently because another one of my conclusions for a better wardrobe is More Sweaters, Fewer Sweatshirts.  This is just as comfortable, but has more of a style.  In the old days (pre-July 6, 2011), I would have probably worn this sweater with a brown long-sleeve tee underneath. But since starting this project and reading fashion and style blogs, I wanted to do something a little more exciting. I thought that contrasting patterns in a gray or tan similar to what is in the sweater would be ideal, but I don't have anything that fits that description. This black and white striped shirt will have to do. What would you wear under this sweater?

Sweater and bag: Target
Top: Betsy's, from Gap
Jeans: Tommy Hilfiger via TJ Maxx
Boots: Gift from Mom, Kenneth Cole via Marshalls
Necklace: Gift from Margaret
Pearly earrings: ??
Sunglasses: Gap

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Day 134: Edging toward edgy

You may know by now that I have a new philosophy on pants, and that is...I don't really believe in them. Skirts and dresses almost always look more pulled together and are more fun, and are more flattering on me, at least.  But cold days sometimes call for long pants, and loose-fitting shirts sometimes call for tightly fitting pants, so I just bought this pair of black pants from  They're pretty tight, but I promise they're not leggings.  Before today, the only pants that I had that were snug enough at the ankle to wear with boots were jeans, so I'm excited to wear boots to work now whenever I want, whether I'm wearing a dress, skirt, or pants. 

If you've been following along since the beginning or have just found my project today, I want to thank you so much for reading my blog and judging my outfits! I have way more readers than I anticipated I would after a few months of blogging, and you all have kept me motivated to always wear something different.  I surely wouldn't be wearing short sleeves outside (or at all) today if it weren't for all of you!

Coat: Gift from Mom, Johnston & Murphy
Shirt: Gift from Mom, Banana Republic
Pants: Target
Boots and Bag: Old Navy
Earrings: Gift from Denise
Necklace: Gift from Lauren