Category Archives: pattern mixing

SIA interpretation: Patchwork jogakbo

It’s time for my Style Imitating Art (SIA) interpretation! And there’s still time to participate in the challenge! 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 (me!), at librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com. Deadline is tonight by 10 p.m. Pacific Standard Time (PST), and I will then post the SIA round-up on my blog tomorrow. Also, be sure to check out my SIA co-hosts Salazar @ 14 Shades of Grey and Erin @ Loop Looks.

Inspiration:

I chose an artwork image that the Metropolitan Museum of Art recently released into the public domain, a striking patchwork wrapping cloth from Korea, called a “jogakbo,” that was made by an unidentified artist, ca. 1950–80. The cloth is in the upper right of the collage below.

Librarian for Life + Style | SIA stripes + gingham inspiration outfit collage

Interpretation:

When I saw the graphic design of the wrapping cloth, I immediately thought of my new Lands’ End striped dress. That was my starting point. I could have stopped there, but since the cloth incorporates different shapes, I thought pattern-mixing was in order. (Any excuse to pattern-mix, y’all! 😉 ) I could have paired this dress with almost any of my gingham shirts, but in the end, I went with my old orange gingham shirt from Old Navy. And my yellow tote bag finished off this ready-for-spring casual outfit.

And y’all know I’m not one to shy away from wearing color. Bring it on, spring! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

I went with my champagne-colored flats because they’re a neutral color, plus I thought the wrapping of the satin ribbon on the front of the flats fit in with the inspiration wrapping cloth.

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + flats SIA outfit closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

It was such a gorgeous and sunny day last weekend — the first day of spring that it felt warm enough to go out with bare legs! (And yes, I am really am this pale, all year round.)

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit closeup

And last but not least, do y’all remember when I mentioned the last time we took pics along East 34th Street Bridge that I wanted to take pics there each season as a fun way to capture the seasons here in Tacoma? So here you go, springtime and budding trees along East 34th Street Bridge in east Tacoma!

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + gingham SIA outfit

Weather:  Sunny and glorious

Where:  Errand-running on a Saturday morning

What:

  • Striped dress:  Lands’ End, new {exact dress still available!}
  • Gingham shirt:  Old Navy, old
  • Flats:  Payless, old
  • Tote bag:  Gift from my mom, old
  • Drop earrings:  Local boutique in Portland, old

Shop my outfit:

similar orange gingham shirt  //  exact striped dress  //  similar colorblock tote bag  //  similar flats

Librarian for Life + Style | Orange gingham + striped dress outfit collage


Can’t wait to see the round-up!


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

Stripes + pleats + cherry blossoms

In a recent People Style Watch issue, I noted these two outfits featuring pleated skirts, as you can see in the pic below. I thought about how to combine what I liked about the two different looks. So I took the idea of the black striped top from the first outfit and the idea of the coral pleated skirt and animal print flats from the second outfit from GirlWithCurves.com — and created a similarly inspired outfit from pieces I already had in my own closet! 🙂

Librarian for Life + Style | People Style Watch inspiration

I had not originally wanted to wear tights, but it’s still quite chilly here, especially in the mornings. I wore this outfit to present at a state conference hosted right here in Tacoma, and I knew I would be presenting in a large room. Therefore, I wanted to wear something that was eye-catching enough so you could see me even from the back of the room, but still professional looking enough for a conference.

I could have tucked in my shirt, but I kinda liked the more easygoing feel it gave to the outfit when I left it untucked. This striped tee looks more professional than regular tees, due its square-neck detailing and elbow-length sleeves. Plus, it’s more comfortable leaving the top untucked, and it’s important to feel comfortable when you’re presenting! 🙂

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + leopard print closeup

And this new tote bag I got from Target is great! It’s just the right size, and it feels sturdy and looks professional and chic at the same time. LOVE!

Librarian for Life + Style | Cherry blossoms + new black tote bag

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

And with pleated skirts, there are always opportunities for twirling!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Stye | Coral pleats + black stripes + leopard print

We took these photos a couple of weeks ago when the cherry blossoms around town were just starting to come alive. And there are so many different varieties of colors! The pics above were taken in the morning, before my presentation. I found a pink tree with a white variety blooming at its base. I thought the effect was cool.

Below are pics we took in the afternoon after the conference, along “Museum Row” in downtown Tacoma. These beautiful light pink cherry tree blossoms look like nature’s cotton candy, and the pic below is a gorgeous representation of Tacoma in the springtime. You’ve got a view of downtown, the Tacoma Dome, and a bit of Mount Rainier peeking up, and all framed with cherry blossoms. Simply stunning!

Librarian for Life + Stye | Downtown Tacoma in the springtime

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + pleats + cherry blossom collage

Librarian for Life + Stye | Stripes + pleats + cherry blossoms

Weather:  Sunny but still cold enough for tights

Where:  Conference day that included a presentation

What:

  • Striped tee:  Kohl’s, old
  • Pleated skirt:  c/o giveaway, Florence Adams, old
  • Flats:  Karen Scott via Macy’s, old
  • Tote bag:  Target, new
  • Black metal hoops:  Made in Oregon shop, Christmas gift from in-laws, old

Shop my outfit:

similar black striped tee  //  similar coral pleated skirt  //  similar animal print flats  //  similar black metal hoops  //  exact tote bag from same brand

Librarian for Life + Style | Stripes + pleats + animal print outfit collage

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

Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print | How I mentally put together outfits

If you’re a longtime reader (thank you!), then you know I’m super practical, and I also enjoy thoroughly thinking through each outfit that I wear. It’s a creative outlet for me, and also a way to merge my creative and practical sides together. Everything I wear has a purpose and a reason for why I’m wearing it, depending on the weather and the activities set for that specific day. And sharing those reasons with others is a major reason why I still enjoy blogging. Not just posting pics of what I wear on Facebook or Instagram — but having the space to reflect and write down my thoughts and reasons for what I wear, to give voice to this style journey that I am documenting.

Reflecting on how I “build” outfits

In my head, when I’m “building” outfits, it is akin to those books in my childhood that you could flip the top, bottom, and middle sections to mix-and-match different looks. (Do they still make those?) I have the ability to visualize outfits in my head; I don’t have to physically “see” the clothes to put things together. (Same thing goes for mentally rearranging furniture in a room.) I just flip through possibilities in my head, mentally switching up tops or bottoms or accessories until I get to an outfit combination that makes sense.

How do I know when that moment comes? It’s hard to describe, but it’s like my brain is all active doing that mental flipping, flip flip flip like a lightbulb blinking. When it gets to a good outfit combination, my brain pauses and calms down, the glow from the lightbulb strong and true. A good outfit combo literally and mentally just feels right to me. Maybe that’s simply called instinct. I guess what it comes down to is that I’ve learned to trust my sartorial instincts.

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print closeup

Building an outfit, step by step

So how did this outfit come about? I’ll go through my mental outfit-building, step by step:

  • It first started with the shoes, which are patent leather. It was off-and-on rainy that morning, and patent leather is a good choice for rainy days. This was on the weekend, and we were running errands in the morning, so these patent leather flats would also be practical for doing that.
  • I had worn these grey jeans earlier in the week, so they were still on the floor in the laundry basket, so they came next. These jeans also aren’t too long, so they would be a good length with the flats.
  • Then I mentally flipped through a few possibilities for tops that would tie in with the red flats, and I came to my red striped tee. So far so good.
  • It was chilly, so I wanted an extra layer for warmth, and I first thought about a solid-colored cardigan, like my grey or black cardigan. And then, the final lightbulb — another opportunity to pattern-mix! My grey leopard-print cardigan would coordinate color-wise with my grey jeans but would also provide a bit more visual excitement to the top half with the pattern-mixing.
  • And when I pictured my leopard-print cardigan with the rest of the outfit I had put together in my mind, everything clicked. I could see it in my mind, and it just felt right.
  • Last step, accessories. I didn’t want a necklace to clutter up the pattern-mixing or the boat neckline of the striped tee. I didn’t want heavy earrings because we were running errands. So I went with simple earrings, black and silver earring studs. Done! 🙂

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print closeup

One of our errands took us across the Sound into Gig Harbor. And I like to the take photos while we’re out and about, as a way to also document where we live, so it was a perfect opportunity to highlight the marina waterfront along the smaller town of Gig Harbor. This location was at the Austin Estuary Park, which helps protect wetland and stream buffer areas with native grasses, shrubs, and trees. A great place to take photos, and a great place to appreciate our natural habitat!

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing stripes + leopard print

Finally, another shoe portrait of me and Sam! Tomorrow, I’ll be highlighting another outfit of Sam’s, so stay tuned!

Librarian for Life + Style | Shoes selfie

Weather:  Off-and-on rainy and sunny

Where:  Errand-running in Tacoma and Gig Harbor

What:

  • Cardigan:  c/o giveaway, old
  • Striped tee:  J.Crew Factory, last winter
  • Jeans:  Macy’s, old
  • Flats:  DSW, old

Shop my outfit

similar grey leopard print cardigan  //  similar striped tee  //  similar grey jeans  //  similar patent leather flats

Librarian for Life + Style | Mixing stripes and leopard print outfit collage

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, Flashback Fashion FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

SIA interpretation: Garden Center roses

SIA inspiration pick:

It’s time for my interpretation for this week’s Style Imitating Art (SIA) challenge, this time chosen by Erin @ Loop Looks. She has posted before on her blog about her friend Annabelle’s job at Garden Center Services, an organization that provides services and job training for adults with physical and intellectual disabilities. One of their programs is called GrowArts, and its goal is to have the adults they serve create art that they then sell. For SIA this week Erin chose one of the pieces they have for sale, a striking painting of roses.

My interpretation:

Librarian for Life + Style | Garden center SIA collage

My very first idea was to wear my green, rose-print scarf. I wanted the focus to be more on the rose print, so I went the green-and-tan color scheme route, rather than pulling focus with a bright red clothing item. (But I did add in a touch of red with the ladybug on my brooch.)

The SIA painting is part of the Garden Center Services project, so I wanted to stick with that theme by taking photos in a local community garden. We took photos in the Dometop Community Garden, which is right beside the Rogers children’s park and overlooks a restored 1907 school building.

Can you tell I was ready for spring?! You might say I was so ready, I was jumping for joy… 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

I mixed in more florals with my rose earring studs and my floral clutch. More pattern-mixing with multiple kinds of roses! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Floral scarf and jewelry closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

By the way, this clutch is pretty roomy! I can fit in my wallet, sunglasses case, tissues, chapstick, and my cell phone, with room to spare. PLUS this clutch is pattern-mixing all on its own, with an interior of striped fabric! I also love that the external fabric is a scuba-like material.

Librarian for Life + Style | What's in my clutch?

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

Librarian for Life + Style | Community garden floral-mixing

Weather:  Early spring day with off-and-on sunshine and drizzly rain

Where:  Running errands on the weekend

What:

  • Floral scarf:  Lands’ End, old
  • Denim jacket:  Tommy Hilfiger for Macy’s, old
  • Ankle pants:  Macy’s, old
  • Canvas flats:  Grasshoppers via DSW, old
  • Floral clutch:  Lulu’s, c/o giveaway, old

Shop my outfit:

rose print scarf //  very similar beige ankle pants  //  rose stud earrings //  similar beige canvas flats  //  very similar dark denim jacket

Librarian for Life + Style | Floral-mixing outfit collage

How you can participate in this SIA challenge:

There’s still time to participate!

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, Erin, at looplooks@gmail.com. Erin will post the SIA round-up on her blog, Loop Looks, this Wednesday, so get those photos in to her before then!

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

SIA interpretation: Bold portrait

It’s time for my Style Imitating Art (SIA) interpretation! For the first SIA challenge of March, which also happens to be Women’s History Month, I knew I wanted to choose a piece of art of a woman created by a woman. I chose a modern painted portrait by the South African artist Juanita Mulder (who uploads her artwork to Pixabay under the username of “Agnali”). There is a brief bio and more of her artwork here on this site. I was struck by the bold colors and brush strokes of this painting, as well as by the bold expression on the woman’s face.

And there’s still time to participate in the challenge! 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 (me!), at librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com. Deadline is tonight by 10 p.m. Pacific Standard Time (PST), and I will then post the SIA round-up on my blog tomorrow. Also, be sure to check out my SIA co-hosts Salazar @ 14 Shades of Grey and Erin @ Loop Looks.

Librarian for Life + Style | Style Imitating Art collage

My starting point was actually the background. I knew I wanted a red wall and a red lip. And if I found a red wall to take pictures in front of, that meant I didn’t have to have any red in my actual outfit. So then I focused on mixing the lighter (creamy yellow) and darker (black) tones of the painting, hence my yellow cardigan and black skirt.

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

I didn’t actually set out to pattern-mix, but it just seems to naturally happen! My yellow cardigan has a starburst pattern up close, but from further away, it looks more like a solid color, a soft, pale yellow. I hadn’t worn my black dotted skirt in awhile, so that I thought that would be a more fun choice than my solid black skirt. And of course, my red lipstick finished off the look!

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

This was a day that included snow, rain, and wintry mix. That explains my umbrella, and you can actually see in these photos the wintry mix raining down. It’s hard to capture rain or precipitation of any kind in photos, so for it to be this visible in photos, you know it was really coming down that day!

And of course, there was time for twirling and outtakes!

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Red + yellow + black inspiration outfit outtake

Weather: Snow, rain, wintry mix, and sunshine all mixed into one slushy mess

Where:  Work day and then eating out for a campus fundraiser

What:

Shop my outfit:

similar yellow cardigan  //  very similar black dotted skirt  //  similar black waist belt  //  very similar black heeled boots  //  similar black and gold teardrop earrings

Librarian for Life + Style | Yellow + black outfit collage


Linkups:  Hello MondayVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning HeadsWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore Wednesday, I Feel Pretty Wednesdays, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer StyleThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday ModaFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday