Category Archives: winter outfits

Remixing my bandage dress

I’ve worn this bandage dress c/o The Kewl Shop a few times before, but I had always worn it layered under something else, like a cardigan or sweater. This time, I layered it over other items of clothing, a black turtleneck and black leggings. I love thinking about finding new ways to wear clothing in my closet!

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress collage

2014 outfit (with a cardigan)  //  2015 outfit (with a sweater)

I felt very secure in this outfit; this stretchy bandage dress was doing all the work of holding me in and supporting me. I am very much covered in this outfit — the top of my neck, face, and hands are the only bits of skin showing — yet the overall impression feels strong and sexy. I think it comes down to the silhouette the dress helps create, and the confidence I had in wearing it.

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress with a turtleneck and leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress

I thought about going with my black metal hoop earrings, to keep everything black except the dress, but then I spied these lavender metal earrings. I thought the color and shape of the earrings would be a nice play off the pattern and colors of the dress.

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress

And as you can tell in these photos, it was raining really hard. Thank goodness I now have a phone that is water resistant! It makes it possible to take photos in the rain, which is very much the normal weather this time of year in the Pacific Northwest. Also, it tends to be overcast when it rains (but not always!), which makes the lighting particularly good for photos.

This outfit was definitely a hit at work! I had several meetings that day, and almost everyone who complimented me on the dress — all ladies, btw — wanted to touch the stretchy fabric. Against all that black, the blue, purple, and white feathery pattern of the dress really stood out, and I joked that the pattern was like a Rorschach test up close. Colleagues also got a kick out of when I stretched the dress so that the pattern and colors got distorted, like you can see in the photo below. And a couple of people commented that they liked the exposed zipper down the back. It’s a fun dress to wear!

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress with a turtleneck and leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress with a turtleneck and leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my bandage dress with a turtleneck and leggings

Weather:  Reallllllly rainy

Where:  Work day with multiple meetings and Reference Desk duty

What:

  • Bandage dress:  c/o The Kewl Shop, 2014
  • Turtleneck:  Walmart?, old
  • Leggings:  Spanx, this winter
  • Tall boots:  Rampage via Nordstrom, over a decade old
  • Earrings:  Portland Saturday Market, couple of years ago

Shop my outfit:

feathered floral scuba fit-and-flare dress  //  similar black turtleneck  //  very similar black high-heeled boots  //  triangle drop earrings

Librarian for Life + Style | Print dress + black layers outfit collage

Which is your favorite way that I’ve worn this bandage dress? Please leave a comment and let me know!

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

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Statement necklace + necklace extension trick

I wasn’t actually planning on taking pics of this outfit, as it’s not an outfit I put much thought into in the early morning hours when I was getting dressed. This is a combination that I’ve reworn several times — a cozy sweater + skinny jeans + tall boots. But on this morning, I thought, “Hmmmm… why not add a statement necklace just to brighten things up? That’ll cheer me up.” And it did!

I decided to take pics after I got home from work, as several colleagues commented favorably on my statement necklace and how it “popped” against the darker tones of my outfit. And we were lucky enough to capture that “golden light” when the day starts to turn to dusk. Plus, our winter-blooming camellias added another pop of color in the background. I love these flowers!

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

And below is a closeup of my statement necklace — and matching earrings! My paternal grandmother made both the necklace and the earrings; she was a very creative and artistic person, and I inherited a lot of her jewelry after she passed away. (I also highlighted my grandmother’s jewelry here in this post.) She lived in Arizona during her later years, hence the turquoise and Southwestern feel to this jewelry set. You definitely don’t see much of this kind of jewelry up here in the Pacific Northwest, which is probably why it stood out even more for my colleagues!

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

How to easily extend necklaces:

Now for the bracelet extender trick! I got this tip years ago from my blogger pal Erin @ Loop Looks, and it’s super simple. Just attach a bracelet to both ends of the necklace clasps, as you can see below, and voilà, you’ve extended any necklace by a few inches! It helps if the bracelet matches the metal or material of the necklace — but it doesn’t have to. That’s why I usually employ this trick when I’m wearing a turtleneck or cowl sweater or top , so the bracelet extension part is hidden by the extra folds of fabric.

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace and extender trick

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace

Weather:  Cold but dry

Where:  Casual work day

What:

  • Cowl sweater:  Maurice’s?, very old
  • Skinny jeans:  Banana Republic, last year
  • Tall boots:  Marc Fisher via Macy’s, old
  • Necklace and earrings:  Made by my paternal grandmother, vintage

Shop my outfit:

similar purple sweater  //  similar silver-and-turquoise necklace  //  exact black skinny jeans  //  similar black flat boots

Librarian for Life + Style | Purple sweater + statement necklace 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

Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

🍀 🍀 🍀 I’m wearing green on my blog for St. Patrick’s Day! 🍀 🍀 🍀

I knew I wanted to pair this colorblock-trim cardigan with my navy dress, a riff off when I wore this cardigan over my navy dotted skirt. That morning as I was getting dressed, I happened to look over at my scarf bins in our closet… and realized that one of the vintage scarves I thrifted in the fall had the EXACT colors of this cardigan. EXACT. (I can neither confirm nor deny a happy dance commencing after that revelation.)

The front of my cardigan is distinctive with a row of navy trim down the front with brass buttons as well as navy-trimmed pockets, so I didn’t want to detract from those details with my scarf. I could have doubled up the scarf to wear it more like a neckerchief, but then another light bulb… I could wear my scarf with the ends hanging down the back!

I am a fashion rebel, y’all. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan, closeup

The mint-and-navy scarf I thrifted last fall is a Vera Neumann scarf, and it is so pretttttttty. I was looking at posts, like here and here, about how you could date the scarf, and most of the clues go back to the signature. The signature on my scarf with its taller and more curved “V” looks like the signature that began in the late 60s and in the 80s. Based on the more streamlined, preppy-type pattern, I’m going to guess the early ’80s, rather than the ’60s, when her scarves had more graphic and geometric prints.

Below is a closeup of my scarf’s signature, plus how well it matches the trim of my cardigan. Y’all know how I love color-coordinating, so this discovery had me over the moon!

Librarian for Life + Style | Closeup of thrifted Vera Neumann scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Looking over these pics, I really should have used either my steamer or my wrinkle releaser spray on my outfit… on the plus side, these wrinkles serve to highlight everyday use. Just another example of how I really do wear these outfits in real life! 😉

Also, it was super fun and sweet when a student worker in our library that day stopped short, all wide-eyed, and asked, “Did that scarf come with that cardigan? How does it attach?” And then she was amazed that I had bought each piece separately, even years apart! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy | Color-coordinating a scarf + cardigan

Weather: Chilly and a bit drizzly

Where:  Work day with meetings (what else is new?!)

What:

  • Cardigan:  Target, years ago
  • Dress (worn as skirt):  Macy’s, old
  • Scarf:  Vera Neumann, thrifted, vintage
  • Tights:  American Apparel, old
  • Wedges:  Anne Klein via Macy’s, old
  • Hoop earrings:  Birthday gift, old

Shop my outfit:

mint trim cardigan  //  very similar navy fit-and-flare dress  //  mint scarf  //  almost exact navy wedges by same brand

Librarian for Life + Style | Mint + navy 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

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

Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Another day of rainy day layers? You’d think I lived in the Pacific Northwest or something… 😉 Seriously, y’all. So. Much. Rain. And it’s funny to me how it really is hard to capture rain in a photograph. It was legit raining while we took these photos — none of the drizzly rain we’re (in)famous for in the PNW, but honest-to-goodness rain — and you really can’t tell.

On to today’s outfit! I don’t wear my burgundy zip-up sweater cardigan all that often, because it is 100% wool and really warm. It’s also wool, and therefore itchy, which means I have to wear a long-sleeved tee or turtleneck underneath it. So now y’all know that it was both rainy AND very cold when I wore this sweater cardigan.

And I’ve worn this sweater cardigan with these boots before, as seen in the collage below. But this time around, I wore it with a denim skirt and leggings (and a different-colored turtleneck). Remixing = real life.

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a sweater cardigan collage

2013 outfit — which I really want to rewear soon! Also, it’s fun to pair up photos like these, like I’m looking at myself across time and space.

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Sam joked that it the gentleman in the mural who’s facing outward, as seen above, looked like he was enjoying my posing in front of his mural. That made me laugh! Sam always does manage to make me laugh, especially when we’re taking photos! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

And more info about this backdrop! I’ve been wanting to take photos at this location for awhile now. It’s a series of murals made out of ceramic tiles, and they look so different depending on whether you’re viewing them up close, like in the pic above, or from further away, like in the pic below.

The murals depict historical views and buildings from the Stadium District neighborhood in Tacoma around the turn of the century. There’s so much public art here in Tacoma, and this is a great example of public art integrated into a private building. You can read more about the murals here and here.

Librarian for Life + Style | Ceramic tile murals in Tacoma, Stadium District

And of course, as we walked across the street after taking photos (where there is an iron fence), Sam suggested I mimic the gentleman in the central mural who is gazing out over the city. No city view for me — the view past the trees is industrial, hence the trees — but we like to be thorough, y’all. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Librarian for Life + Style | Rainy day layers | Wool + denim + leggings

Weather:  Raindrops keep fallin’ on my head…

Where:  Sunday brunch with friends in Stadium District

What:

  • Wool cardigan:  Smart Set, bought during PEI trip, 2006
  • Denim skirt:  Thrifted, old
  • Leggings (worn as tights):  Spanx for Kohl’s, old
  • Boots:  Marc Fisher via Macy’s, old
  • Peacoat:  Bealls, old

Shop my outfit

similar burgundy cardigan sweater  //  similar a-line denim skirt  //  similar brown leggings by same brand  //  similar cognac tall boots

Librarian for Life + Style | Sweater cardigan 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