Summer casual | Berry + black

I had totally forgotten about these pics Sam took earlier in the month… but I am happy to squeeze them in the last day of the month!

I wore this super casual outfit — long shorts + tank top + flat sandals — for an informal get-together and a pinot noir wine tasting at my friend Stephanie’s house. The dress code was officially “casual” — and a good thing, too, as it happened to fall on a blisteringly hot day.

So what to wear to a super casual wine tasting get-together with friends? I followed my own advice from my “What to wear to a wine tasting” post last winter — I wore something wine-colored! ;)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Summer casual, berry + black

Details:  Berry tank top, from my mom {similar}  //  Black shorts, Kohl’s {similar}  //  Black t-strap sandals, Payless, old {similar}  //  Black dangly earrings, Christmas gift from Stephanie {similar}  //  Straw fedora, my husband’s {similar}

And how do you dress up a tank top + shorts combo a little bit? Top off your outfit with a cool fedora! This one is Sam’s, and I am so thankful I can just about wear any hat he owns. Sam is probably not so thankful for this… ;)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Summer casual, berry + black

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Summer casual, berry + black

Linking up with Manic Monday, Monday Mingle, Sophisticated Style, Visible Monday, Confident Twosdays, Turning Heads, I Feel Pretty, Trendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday,Throwback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer Style, Fashion Friday,Passion for Fashion, Fun Fashion Friday, Charming FridaySunday Funday

SIA interpretation: Cat on a Chair

For the most recent SIA (Style Imitating Art) challenge, Salazar @ 14 Shades of Grey chose “Cat on a Chair”, an 1880 painting by the famous French printmaker Theophile Steinlen. You can also view a closeup of the painting here on this museum site and browse multiple galleries of Steinlein’s works here.

And there is still time to participate in the SIA challenge! It’s open to all, bloggers and non-bloggers, women and men. To participate, send a photo of an outfit inspired by this week’s SIA choice, and send it to Salazar at 14shadesofgreyblog@gmail.com. Deadline is tonight, and Salazar will post the round-up on her blog shortly after.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  SIA interpretation:  Cat on a Chair

Too bad it’s too hot for my cat-print dress, which would have been purr-fect. ;) (You can see the cat-print dress in action here and here.) Instead, I started with the neutral color scheme of browns and tan and added metallic sandals and my JORD wood watch.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Brown + tan neutral casual outfit

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Brown + tan neutral casual outfit

Details:  Brown tunic, Woolworth’s in Abu Dhabi, old {very similar style in neutral colors} {loose-fitting option}  //  Tan shorts, Kohl’s {very similar}  //  Nude-colored tank, ?, old {similar}  //  Metallic sandals, Naturalizer via DSW {very similar by same brand}  //  Wood watch, c/o JORD {exact, Ely style in black}  //  Wood bead earrings, made by my grandmother, vintage {similar}

I also braided my bangs into an easy side rope braid. I thought the braided bits kind of echoed the tabby marking of the cat in the inspiration painting!

Librarian for LIfe + Style  |  Closeups of tunic details and rope braid

This cotton tunic has not made it onto the blog until now, and I think this is the last time you will see it. I got it overseas when living in the UAE, and I wore it a lot in that hot and humid climate, because of the breathable cotton and longer sleeves that cover the upper arms. The beading and embroidery on the front is super pretty. However, the tunic has gotten just a bit too tight for my liking, and it wrinkles too easily. Onto the “donate” pile it goes!

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Brown + tan neutral casual outfit

Stephanie and I have been working on a work project together, so she ended up taking pics of this outfit for the blog. We spied a bench in a shady corner — and it wasn’t until after uploading the pics did I realize that the bench background actually tied in well with the inspiration painting!

I also didn’t realize until I uploaded pics that there is a chalk outline of a person along the back brick wall! You can see it most clearly in the pic above, right above my head. Too funny, right?!

And to help make your Monday even better, here are a couple of pics of my cats, Brontë and Ibsen… sitting on chairs. ;)

Librarian for LIfe + Style  |  My cats sitting on chairs

Our cats couldn’t make it into my SIA pics, but I figured they could still help cheer up anyone’s Monday!

Link ups:  Manic Monday, Monday Mingle, Sophisticated Style, Visible Monday, Confident Twosdays, Turning Heads, I Feel Pretty, Trendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday,Throwback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer Style, Fashion Friday,Passion for Fashion, Fun Fashion Friday, Charming FridaySunday Funday

Closet adventures (June 2015)

A look at my monthly closet adventures for June…

What I got (June 2015)

Details (left to right, top to bottom):  Black gingham bermuda shorts {exact}  //  Black straw fedora {similar}  //  Nancy Drew tote bag {exact}  //  Silver t-strap sandals {exact}  //  Cream/gold t-strap sandals {exact}

Adding and replacing favorite sandals

I have been loving my t-strap thong sandals for more than three summers now, and I have variations of that style in cream/gold, pewter, and black, as seen below. I can’t believe my cream and gold pair is still holding up, but I figured it was time to scout out a replacement pair when that pair finally kicks the bucket. My pewter pair is actually already cracking on the bottom, so ditto.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Remixing my favorite sandals

left  //  middle  //  right

I scouted a lot of sites online trying to find replacement pairs, and I found a couple of good deals. I haven’t received these in the mail yet, but here are the details below.

  • Gold-and-cream t-strap thong sandals, DV by Dolce Vita {exact}:  paid $28.23 (original price $69)
  • Silver t-strap thong sandals, DV by Dolce Vita {exact}:  paid $24.99 (original price $49)

Kohl’s

I mentioned last month I found an old gift card from Kohl’s — woot! — and I combined that with another Kohl’s gift card I earned from surveys for a combined total of $45. I then added a 20% off coupon to the stack, and Sam and I went shopping!

I snagged a cute and comfortable pair of black gingham bermuda shorts — when I tried them on, Sam said, “Those look like Jennifer shorts!” Sold! My husband and I both are going to wear the black straw fedora. We are a hat-wearing couple, after all. ;)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Black straw hat and gingham shorts

Out of Print

Sam received a 40% off discount code for Out of Print Clothing — the same clothing company where my library stamp tee, library card pouch/clutch, Little Women tote bag, Pride and Prejudice tee, and Pride and Prejudice sweatshirt, come from. We couldn’t pass up the deal… plus, for every item you purchase, Out of Print donates a book to a community in need! :)

I couldn’t resist this awesome Nancy Drew tote bag — look at the detail on the inside pocket! Sam got a t-shirt, as well, and with the discount, I basically got this tote bag for free! We haven’t received these in the mail yet, so here are some pics from the Out of Print site:

Nancy Drew tote bag details
  • Nancy Drew tote bag {exact}:  paid $0, Out of Print Clothing (original price $18, used 40% off total purchase)

Budget recap

TOTAL SPENT for this month:  $53.22
TOTAL SAVINGS for this month:  $156.78

TOTAL SPENT THIS YEAR: $423.07
TOTAL SAVINGS THIS YEAR: $2,298+

Complimentary item

This past month, I received a gorgeous wood watch of my choice from JORD, and you can read my review of it here in this post.

Librarian for Life + Style | Orange floral + Jord wood watch review

What’s next?

Still working on cleaning out my closet and adding items to my “to donate” pile…


Linking up with Fran’s Budgeting Bloggers and these other lovely ladies!

Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks | Blue gingham + olive

If you’re a regular reader — thank you! — you know I’m a longtime reader of Loop Looks and a big fan of Erin herself and her style. Therefore, my husband is used to seeing Erin and her blog on my laptop. A funny thing happened a couple of weeks ago when I was looking at Erin’s “Button Ups as Cover Ups” post, which I shared on her blog:

I have to share this funny story — when I was scrolling down this post, my husband casually looked over and exclaimed, “Oh look how cute you look!” I then pointed out that I was looking at YOUR blog, not my own, and he had to do a double-take. LOL! He said it was because he could see me in that outfit (and I do have a blue gingham button-down and olive ankle pants) and that we had picked out the same JORD watch. I can totally see it! Again, I <3 that we’re sartorial kindred spirits :)

Erin then urged me to share the story on my blog and to recreate the outfit. Check and check!

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

Erin’s original post

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

Details:  Blue gingham button-down, Old Navy, old {similar}  //  Olive ankle pants, Tommy Hilfiger via Macy’s, old {very similar}  //  Dotted tank top, Old Navy, old {similar} {similar}  //  Cognac wedge sandals, b.o.c. via Macy’s {very similar from same brand} {also similar from same brand}  //  Wood watch, c/o JORD {exact, Ely style in black}  //  Wood beaded earrings, made by my grandmother, vintage {similar}

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

I changed up a few things, including going with my cognac wedges and getting in some pattern-mixing with a dotted tank top. Hi, my name is Jen, and I ♥ pattern-mixing.

I wore this outfit on a day when I had to go back in for an informal work meeting at my college. (I know, I know, I’m off contract, but I still have some projects during the summer. Sigh.)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

And last but not least, this outtake below. I like to think I’m going, “Ta da!” in this pic, and you just missed some jazz hands. ;)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Inspired by Erin @ Loop Looks:  Blue gingham + olive

Thanks so much, Erin, for the inspiration!

Linking up with Manic Monday, Monday Mingle, Sophisticated Style, Visible Monday, Confident Twosdays, Turning Heads, I Feel Pretty, Trendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday,Throwback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer Style, Fashion Friday,Passion for Fashion, Fun Fashion Friday, Charming FridaySunday Funday

Shoe love: Patterned shoe collection

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a “Shoe love” post. As I was going back through my closet to switch out summer and winter clothing, I started thinking about how most of my shoe collection is made up of solid colors. Which shoes in my closet have patterns or prints? And thus a post idea was born… ;)

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Shoe love:  Patterned shoe collection

First up, stripes! I’ve had the striped strappy wedges and canvas flats for awhile, and I added the striped round-toe wedges to my closet this past spring.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Shoe love:  Patterned shoe collection

Details:  Striped wedges, Payless {very similar} {very similar peep-toe wedges} {cute wedge sandals}  //  Striped strappy wedges, Old Navy, old {almost exact!}  //  Striped canvas flats, Target, old {very similar} {similar}

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Striped shoes collage

left  //  middle  //  right

I’ve slowly added animal print or textures to my wardrobe the past year or two, mostly through accessories. This past fall, I added the leopard print fabric flats and the snakeskin wedges. The tortoiseshell pattern on the patent leather, peep-toe wedges is subtle but fun.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Shoe love:  Patterned shoe collection

Details:  Leopard print cap-toe flats, Karen Scott via Macy’s {very similar – almost sold out!}  //  Snakeskin wedges, Clarks {exact}  //  Tortoiseshell peep-toe wedges, Payless, old {very similar}

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Animal print shoes collage

left  //  middle  //  right

Finally, polka dots! And technically, my 4-inch black-and-yellow heels, seen below on the right, are pattern-mixing with a combination of dots and stripes, but I included them in this photo with my dotted canvas flats. I like that the dotted pattern on both these pairs of shoes is a bit irregular on the placement of the dots — the dots don’t line up perfectly — which gives these patterns a bit more visual interest.

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Shoe love:  Patterned shoe collection

Details:  Dotted canvas flats, Grasshoppers via DSW {exact style in different patterns}  //  Yellow-and-black peep-toe heels, DSW {similar} {similar style in yellow} {similar dot print in flat sandal style} {striped low-heel sandals}

Librarian for Life + Style  |  Dotted shoes collage

left  //  right

After putting together the collages to showcase different ways I’ve worn the shoes, it makes me smile to note that I often pair patterned shoes with other patterns! Also, looking through this mini-collection, I realize that I have no floral patterns in my shoe collection. Perhaps a gap to fill… :)

Do you have patterned shoes in your own closet? Please leave a comment and let me know!

Linking up with Manic Monday, Monday Mingle, Sophisticated Style, Visible Monday, Confident Twosdays, Turning Heads, I Feel Pretty, Trendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, Throwback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer Style, Fashion Friday, Passion for Fashion, Fun Fashion Friday, Charming FridaySunday Funday