Tag Archives: scarves

Monthly budget adventures (November 2017)

A quick reminder to please vote for your favorite outfit of mine from last month — thanks in advance!

And now it’s time for my monthly budget adventures! I spent a grand total of $12 this month, all on new-to-me items that I picked up at an estate sale in Portland over the Veterans’ Day holiday weekend. We had gone down to Portland to stay with some friends, who happen to be experts at estate sales. (Tips they gave us:  Be polite; Dress well but not fancy; bring cash; and be prepared to walk away if the seller won’t agree on a lower price.)

We went on the final Sunday for an estate sale in the very nice Laurelhurst neighborhood of Portland, where I found these lovely items for half-off the original price:

  • Patent leather pumps with velvet bows, Franco Sarto {similar}:  Priced at $12, paid $6
  • Snakeskin and patent leather cap-toe flats, Bandolini {very similar!}:  Priced at $8, paid $4
  • Small square silk scarf {similar}:  Priced at $4, paid $2

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!

Librarian for Life + Style | Brown patent leather bow heels, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Snakeskin and patent leather flats, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Librarian for Life + Style | Olive + burgundy silk square scarf, estate sale find

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $12
Total savings for this month:  $125 estimate

Total spent for this year:  $832
Total savings for this year:  $720


I have a few gift cards for Lands’ End that I’ve saved up, so I’m planning on some Christmas shopping for myself!

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Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

A quick note that the poll is about to close for you to vote for your favorite outfit from last month — thanks in advance for voting!

Today’s outfit was inspired by two things:  (a) the rainy weather, and (b) wanting to remix this striped dress, which you’ve seen before here and here.

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

Bonus pattern-mixing provided by my Pride & Prejudice-print scarf (a recent birthday gift from my friend Stephanie). The scarf was a last-minute addition — it was chilly in the morning! — but I thought it paired nicely with my navy-and-berry striped dress. My navy boot socks also provided a bit more texture to the overall outfit.

I also wore my new put-a-bird-on-it resin earrings, which you also saw earlier this week! And the pink stripe on the back of my rain boots tied in with the berry color of my dress… yes, the details in this outfit made me smile inside all day. 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

 

Librarian for Life + Style | Closeup of bird earrings and Pride & Prejudice scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing a striped dress with rain boots

Weather:  Rainy and chilly

Where:  Work

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!

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

SIA interpretation: Black Cat

A quick note that the poll is open for you to vote for your favorite outfit from last month — thanks in advance!

And now it’s time for my interpretation for the most recent Style Imitating Art (SIA) challenge, this round curated by SIA co-founder Salazar @ 14 Shades of Grey.

The inspiration:

Salazar chose “Kuroki Neko” — aka “Black Cat” — a painting by Japanese artist Hishida Shunso (1874-1911).

Collage of "The Black Cat" and my inspiration outfit. "Kuroki Neko" ("Black Cat") by Hishida Shunsō, 1910, is in the Public Domain.

Collage of “The Black Cat” and my inspiration outfit. “Kuroki Neko” (“Black Cat”) by Hishida Shunsō, 1910, is in the Public Domain.

My interpretation:

I have several cat-print items in my wardrobe, including this adorable cat-print tee, so my main task was to narrow down which cat-print item in my wardrobe to choose from… and that’s when I realized that I hadn’t featured my cat-print dress on the blog for a few years. I have consistently worn this dress — it’s a staple during the fall season, and those on Instagram have seen me wear this dress already this fall (along with this same blanket scarf, although worn in a slightly different way) — but I just hadn’t bothered photographing it recently.

The colors in this dress are just so perfect for the inspiration artwork, as well as the kitty cats in the pattern!

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

And just how perfect is this background?! I knew this little Japanese garden would be a good starting point, as the artist for this week’s SIA inspiration artwork, Hishida Shunso, is Japanese. In the garden, I then spied this Japanese maple tree in this gorgeous shade of yellow, which matched the inspiration painting so well! It was meant to be. (Happy sigh.)

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

I forgot to get detail shots of my pumpkin earrings, but you can sorta see them in the pic above. I wore this outfit last Monday, the day before Halloween, so they still fit thematically. And in real life, the orange of those earrings popped against the black blanket scarf. One could argue that the pinstripes in this scarf also echoed the veins in the leaves in the inspiration painting? Right? That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. 😉

My tights also have a ribbed texture, so I’m mixing three different patterns together! Hello, my name is Jen, and I like to find new ways to pattern-mix.

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf closeup with boots and ribbed tights

Librarian for Life + Style | Pattern-mixing a cat-print dress and a pinstriped blanket scarf

Weather:  Dry and sunny, a perfect fall day

Where:  Work day at the library

What:

Please note that I may get commission for clicks made through affiliate links in this post (I only get commission for browsing, not for any purchases made). This goes toward covering my website and file storage fees, so thank you for helping support this blog!

Remixing this dress:

I mentioned at the beginning of this post that I hadn’t featured this cat-print dress on the blog for awhile, so I thought I’d make a collage of the previous ways that I have worn this cat-print dress. You’ll notice in the middle pic below that the back of this dress is actually a V-neck — but this time around, I switched the dress around to wear the rounder neckline in the back!

Librarian for Life + Style | Remixing my cat-print dress

Links to original posts:
left (2012)  //  middle (2013)  // right (2014)

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, Salazar, at 14shadesofgreyblog@gmail.com by tomorrow, Tuesday, November 7th. Salazar will then post the SIA round-up on her blog, 14 Shades of Grey, this Wednesday.

Can’t wait to see the SIA round-up!


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

Monthly budget adventures (October 2017)

I spent ZERO dollars this month — I was wayyyyyyy too busy to do any shopping! (Seriously, this month, I attended two conferences, gave three presentations, and finished revising an article for publication, in addition to all my daily work stuff and teaching a two-credit course and grading papers. And my husband also had hand surgery this month — he’s recovering just fine, by the way — so I have had a busy time when I got home from work, too!)

Empty shopping cart illustration

Budget recap:

Total spent for this month: $0
Total savings for this month:  $0

Total spent for this year:  $820
Total savings for this year:  $591

Complimentary items:

But this post is not quite done, as I did receive three complimentary items from the Tobi online retail site in exchange for me selecting, styling, and reviewing the clothing items. You can read my style posts and reviews here:

I chose three items, as seen in the pics below:

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi blanket scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater

Librarian for Life + Style | Closeup of asymmetrical hem of Tobi navy sweater

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi grey sweater cardigan

Librarian for Life + Style | Closeup of Tobi grey sweater cardigan


Not sure if I will find any time (or energy) for shopping next month, either… I will keep y’all posted!

Did you get any new clothing items this month? Please do a comment and/or link and share.

Tobi Review | Oversized sweater + blanket scarf

I was recently contacted by online clothing retailer Tobi with an opportunity to choose a few items from their site to review and style. It was fun to browse through their extensive site and look at different pieces and visualize potential outfits. (Putting together outfits in my head is like my way of doing crosswords — it keeps my brain active!)

Full disclosure:  Although I was provided clothing items of my choice free-of-charge to style and review, all my opinions are my own words, thoughts, and experiences.

What’s Tobi?

Tobi is definitely focused on trendy, “fast fashion” pieces and a self-described L.A. style. Their size range is admittedly limited, only extending to size Large (equivalent to 8-10, although a generously sized 8-10); my body lands on the uppermost end of their sizing scale, so I purposely chose items that were NOT form-fitting. I also admit that I am not particularly trendy, and my style is… more “color-coordinated” than “L.A. cool.” But I viewed that as an interesting challenge, to see if I could “see myself” in any of their items. And I did! There are a lot of items on their site that are admittedly NOT my style — rompers may be fine for others but decidedly not for me! — and there looks to be a range of quality and styles with a range of price ranges to match. Tobi is known for their low prices and final sales, but I found a number of moderate-to-higher-priced items that also seemed to be higher quality. I focused on choosing more substantial and looser-fitting pieces — and it’s autumn, so that meant I had a lot of options with sweaters and knitwear! Hooray for me! The shipping was also super-fast, but there’s the caveat that I live on the West Coast, so the items didn’t have far to go.

I also have to admit that I was impressed with their openness on the Tobi website about their processes and policies. I was also impressed that they fund a scholarship program for young women, and they have a page showcasing the local non-profit organizations the company donates to. It’s fast fashion, yes, but Tobi also seems like a company that gives back for the long-term.

Two Tobi items I paired together:

In this outfit, I am wearing two of the three items I chose:  a long, oversized, v-neck navy sweater (the “School Boy Ribbed Sweater,” priced $78 but currently on sale for $19) and a black blanket scarf with white stripes (the “Mel Pinstripe Scarf,” priced $32 but currently on sale for $16).

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

I primarily paired these two items together because I wanted to showcase again how you CAN wear navy + black together. My rule of thumb in combining navy + black is to be intentional about it. I am wearing one main navy piece — this simple yet bold navy sweater, which really is a standout — that I’ve paired with black leggings, tall boots, and my black pinstriped scarf. The “star” of this outfit is the sweater, and everything else is supporting it.

The sweater is purposely oversized — very ’80s, isn’t it, with its sloped shoulders and boxy shape? — and it’s the kind of sweater that honestly looks pretty shapeless on its own or on a hanger. I took it out of the box, and my husband Sam was NOT impressed and said it looked huge and wouldn’t fit me. I put it on, and guess what? He looooooved it! So did I! The sweater felt substantial enough in its ribbed weave and thickness, and felt very cozy and warm — not scratchy at all.

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater

Librarian for Life + Style | Closeup of asymmetrical hem of Tobi navy sweater

My favorite detail of the sweater is how it’s longer in the back, which you can really tell in the photos above. That means there is extra coverage for one’s bottom, which I really appreciate, especially since I’m a pear-shaped lady. And the sweater is still long enough in the front to wear the sweater over leggings and not have to worry about anything showing. I would also wear this sweater with skinny jeans or ankle pants. The key with an oversized item of clothing is to pair it out with other pieces that fit closer to the body — this provides visual balance.

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

And I LOVE LOVE LOVE this blanket scarf. It is so warm and soft. I love it so much that I have already worn this scarf twice! (If you’re an Instagram follower, you will have already spotted this scarf!) And the scarf’s pattern with its black background and thin white pinstripe is neutral enough to go with lots of other pieces in my wardrobe.

When pairing this navy sweater with the black scarf, leggings, and boots, I also replicated the navy + black color-coordinating with my earrings. I combined larger blue lapis lazuli earring studs with my smaller black studs. Just one more detail to make it clear that I intentionally mixed navy + black together! 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Librarian for Life + Style | Tobi navy sweater + black striped scarf

Weather:  Cold and windy

Where:  Reference night shift at work

What:

I will be back on Friday with how I styled my third and final Tobi item!

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