Category Archives: outerwear

SIA interpretation: Native American mural weaving

It’s time for my personal interpretation of the new Style Imitating Art (SIA) challenge that I curated this go-round. Since this SIA go-round nearly coincides with the upcoming American holiday of Thanksgiving, I wanted to choose a work that honored Native American perspectives and artistry.

SIA inspiration pick:

I chose a breathtaking new mural in Tacoma entitled “Working Forward, Weaving Anew,” designed by lead artists Esteban Camacho Steffensen and Jessilyn Brinkerhoff. It was painted this past summer, and it’s part of a new dedication by Tacoma in supporting local Native American voices in public art. You can read more about the mural online here and here.

Here is one photo, and portion, of this large-scale mural:

Detail of "Working Forward, Weaving Anew" mural, Tacoma, 2017

Detail of “Working Forward, Weaving Anew” mural, Tacoma, 2017

My interpretation:

Living in Tacoma, of course I was lucky enough to pose for photos in front of the mural itself! I focused on the colors, combining different shades of blue and beige, as well as combining different textures. I layered a nubby-textured navy blue sleeveless dress over a beige turtleneck, navy tights, and bronze Mary Jane heels. I then layered my tattersall cape-like short coat over that, to add warmth and depth to the look.

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

My accessories rounded out the outfit and added extra textures:  a royal blue patent leather skinny belt; gold earrings in the shape of a ribbon tied with a knot; and a silk dupioni clutch that looks gold in one light with hints of light blue in different light.

Librarian for Life + Style | Combining textures for SIA, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Combining textures for SIA, Native American mural in Tacoma

Instead of spiking my short hair up or sweeping the bangs off my face, I instead blow-dried it into a sleeker look and smoothed down my bangs. It’s fun to play with my hair, even when it’s short!

I also put my gold ribbon knot earrings in the second, upper hole in my ears, so you could see them better. My paternal grandmother used to make lots of jewelry, including these simple yet striking earrings. I’ve also worn these earrings as a pair of brooches here.

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

And one final look at this breathtaking mural:

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA outfit, Native American mural in Tacoma

Weather:  Chilly and drizzly

Where:  En route to see the “Hip Hop Nutcracker” show at the Pantages Theatre in Tacoma

What:

Please note that I get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post. This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!

There is still time to participate in SIA:

Everyone — bloggers, non-bloggers, all genders, all ages, even pets! — is welcome to participate. Just send a pic of an outfit — selfies and flat lays are also just fine — inspired by this week’s SIA artwork to this week’s curator — that’s me! — at librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com by tomorrow, Tuesday, Nov. 21st, by 10 p.m. Pacific Standard Time (PST). I will then post the SIA round-up on my blog on Wednesday, Nov. 22nd — the day before Thanksgiving!

Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion LinkupTop of the WorldThursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayFabulous FridayFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

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DIY Halloween costume | Dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

As I mentioned earlier this week, this is my fifth (!) year to dress up for Halloween by putting together a costume from items already in my closet. Five years of no-cost costumes!

Here’s a quick trip down Halloween costume memory lane:

Like I said, I had two costume ideas this year, both for strong women action heroes in recent pop culture movie hits. So I decided to do them both! First up was me dressing up as Wonder Woman/Diana Prince after she tried on costumes to “blend in” in 1918 London.

Next up is a totally different brand of a strong woman action hero… the Atomic Blonde! Yep, I went blonde (gasp!) for this next Halloween costume (which I plan to wear for a Halloween party this weekend). For my birthday this year, we saw the Atomic Blonde film in the theater, and I was IN LOVE with Charlize Thereon’s look and wardrobe and total badass attitude throughout. The film is based on Antony Johnston and Sam Hart’s 2012 graphic novel The Coldest City.

First, take a look at the film’s trailer to get a feel for the look and vibe that I was going for:

Isn’t Charlize Theron’s wardrobe in this film drool-worthy?! I was actually inspired while I was watching the film to put together my own DIY Halloween costume as the Atomic Blonde. I realized that I had pieces already in my closet that would echo the look and style of the title role.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Putting together the outfit for the Atomic Blonde:

The outfit I put together once again included pieces from my closet as well as pieces from my husband’s closet:

  • I started with this sweater with a grid print in black and white, along with panels of pink down the side. The pattern is so ’80s!
  • Next came my black pencil skirt and ribbed black tights and high-heeled boots (she wears a lot of boots in this film!)
  • Next I knew I would need a long coat (the coat wardrobe ALONE in this film is amazing!). I thought first of my long grey Vienna coat, seen here — but then I remembered my husband’s long, charcoal Vienna coat, seen here, and I knew that would be perfect. The lines of this coat are sharp and tailored, and it being slightly oversized on me would fit the ’80s time period well.
  • My husband’s freebie sunglasses with the hot pink sides was the perfect finishing touch!

One caveat — I did have to buy the blonde pageboy wig, as I am obviously not a natural blonde. (And nor should I be! It actually freaked me out to see what I looked like as a blonde. And I immediately felt like everyone was staring at me because of the bright blonde hair!) So it wasn’t completely a no-cost costume, but the wig only cost a few dollars, so it was still extremely low-cost.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Photo backdrops and filters:

OF COURSE it was unusually bright and sunny the day we had available to take these photos. But since the Atomic Blonde film itself has such fun with different colors and filters, I did, too!

I wanted an industrial or cityscape backdrop for the photos, to tie in with the gritty Berlin landscape of the film, and we finally realized that the top level of the parking garage by the Tacoma Dome station served that purpose very well — complete with a backdrop of downtown Tacoma and its industrial east side. On the way up to the top level of the parking garage, Sam realized it was perfect lighting to snap a few impromptu pics. (Note: I went in afterward and added a turquoise tint to the elevator photos above.)

The remainder of the photos below are overlooking the Tacoma industrial and downtown areas. I did a faded tint on the following photos, as I wanted the photos to feel a bit washed-out and gritty. I had to channel my inner badass — and my best bitchface! — for these photos, and I loved how they turned out!

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

These walking shots below are my personal faves of the bunch!

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Atomic Blonde DIY makeup:

Even though I knew I would be wearing my husband’s pink-and-black sunglasses, I did do a full face of makeup. (I am nothing if not dedicated!) I found this video tutorial from BeautyChemCam about how to do an Atomic Blonde-inspired makeup look. The focus is all on the eyes, with heavy black eyeliner and eyeshadow, but with a neutral lip color.

And it’s the first time I’ve tried all-over black shadow on my lids — and the first time I’ve lined all the way around my eyes myself! It was a little disconcerting at first to see myself in such heavy eye makeup. I have never done eye makeup like this before, because, well, I have large eyes (and eyelids), and it always felt like I would be “gilding the lily,” if that makes any sense. But I actually kinda liked the look, and it surprised me to learn that I could actually carry off such an intense makeup look!

Also, do you like how you can see the bandaid on my finger in the pic below? I think it actually adds to the costume, as the director purposely showed in the film how the Atomic Blonde has to physically recover from violent encounters.

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Librarian for Life + Style | DIY Halloween costume, dressing up as the Atomic Blonde

Did you enjoy this DIY Halloween outfit and a second — and very different! — female action hero? What are you dressing up for Halloween this year? Please leave a comment and share!

Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion FilesThursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayFabulous FridayFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Pencil skirt work casual

If you haven’t already voted, a quick reminder that the poll is still open to vote for your favorite outfit of mine from last month! 😀

This outfit is quite similar to this outfit that I wore last month:  same color palette of red + grey + black; a grey library-themed tee; the same red cotton jacket + black striped canvas flats. But there’s one major difference — this time, instead of black ankle pants, I wore my stretchy black pencil skirt. This simple swap really changes the whole look for me!

Also, as I frequently like to say, remixing = real life!

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual closeup, with a bold red lip

Pairing a pencil skirt with sneakers feels so cool and sporty! I loved wearing this combo! And OF COURSE, I felt compelled to wear red lipstick with my red cotton jacket!

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

It was a bit cooler this summer work day, so the cotton jacket worked as a light layer, for outside breezes and for inside air-conditioning. But the outfit worked without the jacket, too, for a casual work combo.

Also, there’s a bonus outtake below, enjoy!

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual outtake

Librarian for Life + Style | Summer work casual, with a tee + pencil skirt + slip-on sneakers

Weather:  Clear and cool

Where:  Work

What:

  • Tee:  Out of Print Clothing, old {still in stock!}
  • Pencil skirt:  ModCloth, old {still in stock!}
  • Jacket:  Style&Co for Macy’s, old
  • Canvas flats:  Payless, old
  • Cat tote bag:  ModCloth, Christmas gift this year from my mom
  • Earrings:  Local boutique, Christmas gift this year from my husband

Shop my outfit:

similar red jacket  //  exact tee  //  exact black pencil skirt  //  similar black striped canvas flats  //  similar cat “meow” tote

Librarian for Life + Style | Pencil skirt + tee work casual in red + grey + black

Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday#iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsStyle With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy WednesdayWhat I Wore WednesdayI Feel Pretty WednesdaysWeekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion FilesThursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for FashionFun Fashion FridayFabulous FridayFancy FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Seattle staycation + travel casual

During Spring Break a couple of weeks ago, Sam and I enjoyed a bit of a staycation. We took the train up to Seattle and explored some of the typical “tourist-y” sights in town — and enjoyed every minute of it! It was quite drizzly, which was PERFECT for Seattle (and meant less tourists). Win-win!

First stop was the Pike Place Public Market downtown, with its collection of cobblestone streets and alleyways and fish-throwing workers.

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle Public Market sign

Next stop was the gum wall alley, located along Post Alley under Pike Place Market. It’s become a local landmark since the early ’90s. It’s… pretty gross. So OF COURSE we had to take pics there. All for y’all, dear readers. 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall + travel casual outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall + travel casual outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall

It was also a good spot to take pics of my casual travelling outfit. I love wearing cargo vests for travel, so this time I wore my new burgundy cargo vest (which is still available, wow!). It was rainy and cold, so my long-sleeved black tee, comfy jeans, and new black sneakers rounded out the practical parts of my outfit. My chevron knit scarf was practical while also adding a bit of pizzazz to my casual, comfy travel ensemble.

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall + travel casual outfit closeup

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle gum wall selfie

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall + Sam's travel casual outfit

So grosssssssssss! But these pics of us in front of the gum walls crack me up! (And yes, I totally had hand sanitizer gel in my bag!)

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall outtake

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall outtake

Librarian for Life + Style | Seattle gum wall + travel casual outfit

Weather:  Rainy and overcast, stereotypically perfect Seattle weather!

Where:  Typical tourist travels around Seattle downtown

What:

While we were in the vicinity, of course I had to pose with the famous bronze Rachel the Piggy Bank, the “mascot” of the Pike Place Market!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle Public Market pig statue collage

Seattle waterfront and overcast vista near the Public Market:

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle vista

And of course, a stop just down the street to the first Starbucks store!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Visiting the Seattle Starbucks flagship store

Next, we took the monorail up to the Seattle Center, which is the location for the Space Needle and loads of museums, including the Pacific Science Center, Museum of Pop Culture, and The Children’s Museum. And there is public art EVERYWHERE — even to shield the view of parking lots! 🙂

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle public artwork collage

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle Space Needle and fountain

We didn’t go up the Space Needle as the wait was a bit too long. (Plus it was a super cloudy day, and with the steep ticket prices, we figured it would be better to visit again on a clear day.)

And when we visited the Central Branch of the Seattle Public Library, I lit up with glee when I spied a miniature of the Space Needle in its collection!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Space Needle miniature in the Seattle Public Library

And OF COURSE we had to visit the Seattle Public Library, to see up close the iconic and award-winning glass-filled design of its Central Branch, which opened in 2004. It has 10 levels, with tons of views and built-in way-finding by incorporating Dewey Decimal call numbers into the floor tiles. Brilliant!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Seattle Public Library collage

Librarian for Life + Stye | Built-in wayfinding in the Seattle Public Library

Librarian for Life + Stye | Views from the Seattle Public Library

And finally, as you can see below, I had some fun playing around with the library’s copy of Agatha Christie’s The Body in the Library! 😀 😀 😀

By the way, I’m documenting on Instagram my current reading goal of reading, or re-reading, all the Agatha Christie books in the order they were published. I’m currently up to Peril at End House, published in 1932. (For reference, her first book The Mysterious Affair at Styles was published in 1920, and The Body in the Library wasn’t published until 1942.)

#LibrarianNerd #AgathaChristieFan

Librarian for Life + Stye | Having fun with Agatha Christie's 'The Body in the Library' at Seattle Public Library

Even though Seattle was ranked low in a recent national tourism poll — which had me cracking up! — that’s just fine with us! There’s plenty more for us to see and explore and enjoy.

Have y’all ever visited Seattle or the Pacific Northwest? Please leave a comment and share! 🙂

Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, Style With a SmileWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, I Feel Pretty Wednesdays, Weekly Wednesday Fashion Linkup,  Whatcha Wearing WednesdayTop of the WorldThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday ModaCelebrating StyleFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday, Fine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

Sam’s style | Argyle + layers

As promised in yesterday’s post, here’s another opportunity to highlight my husband Sam’s cool style. Yesterday, a shoes selfie; today, a regular selfie!

Librarian for Life + Style | Waterfront selfie

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle cardigan closeup

Sam is such a pro at layering. And layering with interesting pieces. I’d also like to think my love of color-coordination has rubbed off on him. I mean, a brown argyle sweater cardigan over a a grey button-front, paired with a grey fedora with a brown ribbon, PLUS cognac-tipped shoes that tie in with the cognac diamonds in the argyle print. That is master-level color-coordination that also doesn’t come off as gimmicky. PRO.

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, shoes closeup

Sam and I both love these shoes, which have a kind of old-school but classic look. I think they’re his current favorite right now. They’re from Payless! My husband’s a vegetarian, so we have to get shoes made out of man-made materials, rather than leather — which is harder than you’d think! But Payless always has at least some options with faux leather.

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Librarian for Life + Style | Sam's style, argyle + layers

Details of Sam’s outfit:

  • Overcoat:  Zara, bought years ago in Abu Dhabi
  • Sweater cardigan:  Zara? Also bought in Abu Dhabi
  • Button-front:  ???, old
  • Jeans:  Gap, new
  • Shoes:  Payless, new
  • Fedora:  Goorin Bros., bought in Portland a few years ago

I go back-and-forth on whether or not I should provide outfit details when I highlight my husband’s outfits. Would y’all prefer me to include outfit details or not for Sam’s outfits? Please leave a comment and let me know!