Tag Archives: wedge sandals

Retro inspiration | Sailor-style trousers

A few years ago, I did a collage of me and my maternal grandmother, the side of my family that I most resemble, and that post remains one of my very favorite posts. (And y’all recently enjoyed a collage of me and my mom for Mother’s Day!).

Back when I did the post of my grandmother, I mentioned that I had a few different candid photos of her with the idea that I would do more posts of me wearing outfits inspired by her. I didn’t immediately follow up on that idea (sorry!), but I’ve never forgotten that idea. So when I was recently going back over those old photos of my grandmother, I realized that I now had another piece in my wardrobe, a pair of sailor-style pants I picked up this past fall, that I could wear for another retro- and family-inspired look.

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspirations

I basically recreated my grandma’s look with modern versions, starting with my wide-legged, sailor-style trousers. I then thought of my black wedge sandals, which looked a little similar to the bit of her black shoes visible in her photograph. I echoed her polka-dotted button-front blouse with my own diamond-print button-front blouse (the print looks like tiny polka dots from afar). And my new black tote bag is structured enough to play off the hard case she’s carrying in the photo.

I then carried my black rain coat when we took photos, to more closely mimic the inspiration photograph.

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration closeup

And y’all know me and details! I filled in my eyebrows a little more heavily and went red on the lips for a more ’40s makeup look. (The matte finish on my laps is due to just using red lip liner on my lips, instead of red lipstick.)

I think one of the main reasons I didn’t immediately do more of these retro inspiration looks of my grandma’s is because I cut my hair all off later that year into a ’20s-inspired bob. Since my grandmother’s look in these photographs is so clearly from the ’40s, I didn’t feel I could really channel her in the same way that I had in that first post.

I still have short hair, so what made this time different? First, I no longer have the blunt, ’20s-style bangs I used to have, and my bangs are long enough now to play with. My recent hair experiments with the Kenra hairsprays have also given me more confidence in playing with my short hair! Therefore, I decided that I could do a slight nod to the ’40s hairstyles with a little pin curl of my bangs. So I rolled my bangs over and into a slight curl at the end, and then pinned and sprayed the bangs. It’s subtle, but it was enough for me. 🙂

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Librarian for Life + Style | Retro inspiration, sailor-style trousers

Weather:  Cooler but dry

Where:  Work day that included meetings

What:

Shop my outfit:

very similar polka dot button-front shirt  //  similar wide-leg black trousers  //  very similar black strappy wedges  //  exact black tote bag

Librarian for Life + Style | Print button-front and wide-leg trousers outfit collage


Did you enjoy this post and another outfit inspired by my grandmother? Do you have a favorite era for retro style inspiration? 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 FridayFabulous FridayFriday Favorites, Fancy Friday, Flashback Fashion FridayFine-Whatever LinkupWeekend Wear Link Up#SaturdayShareLinkUp

SIA interpretation: Le Chat Noir

It’s time for my Style Imitating Art (SIA) interpretation! Last week, I chose iconic the 1896 “Le Chat Noir” poster by Théophile Steinlen for our collective inspiration.

Librarian for Life + Style | Le Chat Noir SIA collage

I had LOTS of ideas of outfits inspired by this poster, including wearing my cat print dress, seen here. But ultimately, it was too warm to wear that dress, but my cat tee was also perfect for this challenge! I love how the cat on this tee has a similarly non-plussed expression on its face. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit closeup

The stitching outlines on this jacket — one of my best-ever thrifting finds, as I described in this post — echoed the outlines of the cat in the inspiration poster. And in the closeup above, you can also see my quotation mark earrings. Every time I wear these earrings, people comment on them! (Right after they squint at me, turn their head to see my other ear, and go, “Are those… ?” Hah! )

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit

As I mentioned last week, we happen to have a print of this poster in our house. I came across it as we were starting to figure out where to put artwork in our new home, and this poster is in our guest room. (We haven’t hung it up yet, FYI, because we want to figure out other artwork to go with it.)

So I thought it appropriate to pose beside our poster, at least for a couple of pics. Our calico cat Brontë — the one who kept parading in front of me as I was trying to put together the SIA post last week — also decided to get in on the action for the interpretation post.

Here’s how that went down:

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat + cat poster photo session fun

What’s going on here? You’re taking photos? Why wasn’t I informed in advance?!

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat + cat poster photo session fun

I don’t know who those cats are in the poster and on your t-shirt, but I’m the one who’s getting all the petting!

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat + cat poster photo session fun

Ok, enough petting, I’m bored now. See ya!

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee work outfit

Weather:  Mid-60s and no rain on the forecast

Where:  For a series of work meetings on the first day of in-service week

What:

similar cat tee  //  similar moto-style cotton jacket  //  almost exact trousers from same brand //  similar wedges  //  exact earrings  //  exact lipstick

Librarian for Life + Style | Cat tee + moto-style jacket collage

And there is still time to participate in this week’s SIA challenge! Just send a pic of an outfit inspired by this week’s artwork to me at librarianforlifestyle@gmail.com, due tonight, by 10 p.m. Pacific Standard Time. I will post the round-up tomorrow morning.

Linkups:  Hello Monday, Monday MingleVisible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilikeShoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, A Good HUES-DayWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore WednesdayThrowback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer StyleThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday Moda, On the Edge of the WeekFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming Friday, Friday Favorites

Back to school and starting a new job | Blue + yellow

A quick note that the poll is open to vote for your favorite outfit of mine from August — thanks in advance!

I wore this outfit last month to a professional organization board meeting (I’m transitioning off the board), which is when these photos were taken. And thanks to my good friend Stephanie, who took these pictures for me — and we took these photos at her house! Yep, that’s her very cool mural behind me.

I also plan on rewearing this outfit today, on my first day at my new job! Why? Because my new college’s colors are blue and yellow! 😀 And this outfit is casually professional and also comfy, a good combination for starting a new school year AND a new job.

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace closeup

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

My starting point with this outfit was the gingham shirt and the cognac wedges. Then came the navy ankle pants — seriously, these navy ankle pants seem to be my go-to pants for whenever I feel I need a “professional yet still casual” kind of vibe, as seen here, here, and here! Then came the belt, because I thought a little subtle pattern-mixing would be fun. And lastly, the yellow statement necklace, because I thought some contrast was in order.

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

And yep, I totally did the “blogger tuck,” which means half-tucking and half-untucking your shirt in that oh-so-casual way. I’m not so skilled at the casual part, but I actually liked the way it turned out. And it’s just more comfortable to untuck the back of one’s shirt — mine always seem to come untucked in the back anyway! Have you ever done the “blogger tuck” — intentionally or unintentionally?

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

Librarian for Life + Style | Gingham shirt + statement necklace

Weather:  Very hot (upper 90s) and sunny

Where:  Board meeting in Portland (August) + first day at new job (September)

What:

  • Shirt:  Old Navy, old
  • Ankle pants:  Alfani for Macy’s, old
  • Statement necklace:  c/o Urban Peach via giveaway
  • Wedges:  b.o.c. Born via Macy’s, old
  • Belt:  Came with a pair of shorts, Kohl’s, old

similar gingham shirt // similar navy ankle pants // similar cognac cork wedges // cognac espadrille wedges // braided belt // yellow statement necklace

navy + yellow business casual

Linkups:  Hello Monday, Monday MingleVisible Monday, Shoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, A Good HUES-DayWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore WednesdayThrowback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer StyleThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday Moda, On the Edge of the WeekFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming Friday, Friday Favorites

The Umbrellas of Tacoma

I’ve been scouting out interesting sights and public art around town for possible photo ops (and future SIA challenges?), and when I discovered the “Umbrella Wall” mural in the Dome District here in Tacoma (near the “Tacoma Dome” stadium), my eyes lit up. Yessssss!

This simple mural of dozens of colorful umbrellas is so cheery and whimsical — and oh-so-perfect for the rainy Pacific Northwest! Of course, we happened to take photos there on a perfectly sunny summer day. I dressed in all solid colors — a rarity these days — no prints or patterns! Unless you count my purse. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Umbrella Wall mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Umbrella Wall mural in Tacoma

The “Umbrella Wall” mural is part of the Tacoma Mural Project, which began in 2010; this mural was painted in 2012. (The mural was also vandalized last year — such a shame! — but they’ve since cleaned it up, although you can still see bits of the defacing up close.) There is a LOT of public art here in Tacoma, as well as local government support for public art initiatives, which is awesome. Individually and collectively, the art really highlights the character and diversity of the city and each neighborhood.

You can tell I had a LOT of fun posing for pictures against this cheerful backdrop! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

In keeping with the whimsical nature of the mural backdrop, I also went for whimsy with my accessories, choosing dangly earrings handmade by my paternal grandmother and a handbag made from a vintage book cover. My bright pink cork wedges coordinate with my bright pink blouse (and with my lip stain!).

I don’t think I’ve showcased this vintage book cover purse before on the blog. At a librarian conference years ago in Wisconsin, I won both this “Beach Club” book cover purse and this “Candid Confessions” book cover purse, last seen here, in a prize raffle.

Librarian for Life + Style | Bright and whimsical accessories

Librarian for Life + Style | Vintage book cover purse, front and back covers

I also brought along my dark denim jacket, for colder indoor air conditioning. I like how the dark denim also adds to the colorblocking theme. And even though it’s all colorblocking — which tends to visually “chop up” the body — I did actually feel “long ‘n’ lean” in this outfit. This was helped, of course, by the height of these platform wedges. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Gotta say, I am LOVING Tacoma and our first summer here. The different places we’ve been to and taken photos thus far have also made for really dynamic photos and posts. Hope y’all are enjoying Tacoma, as well!

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Librarian for Life + Style | Colorblock outfit + umbrella mural in Tacoma

Weather:  Sunny and hot (in the high 90s!)

Where:  Lunch with Sam, errand-running, and grocery shopping

What:

similar blouse // similar denim jacket //  similar cargo shorts // similar wedges // pink lace-up sandals // fun clutch // exact lip stain

Summer casual and book purse

Last but not least, a gold star for those who get the pop culture reference behind this post’s title!

Linkups:  Hello Monday, Monday MingleVisible Monday, Shoe and TellConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, A Good HUES-DayWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore WednesdayThrowback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer StyleThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday Moda, On the Edge of the WeekFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming Friday, Friday Favorites

SIA interpretation: Rescued art

My turn to interpret the latest Style Imitating Art (SIA) challenge. It was Erin’s turn to curate, and she rescued this painting, The Door Within, from the dumpster in her building! The artist, Jean Fetman, from Highland Park, IL, and you can read Fetman’s obituary online here.

There is still time to participate in this week’s SIA challenge! Just sent a pick of an outfit inspired by this week’s artwork, and send a photo — selfies and flay lays also okay — to Erin at looplooks@gmail.com by tonight, Monday, August 22. Erin will then post the round-up on her blog, Loop Looks.

(Warning, this post is particularly photo-heavy — Sam captured a lot of good photos!)

Here is my interpretation of The Door Within:

Librarian for Life + Style | 'The Door Within' Style Imitating Art challenge

This painting is so vibrant, I knew I wanted to pull out at least a couple of the bright colors. So many to choose from! My pink scarf with the white geometric pattern was the starting point — the painting is composed of geometric shapes — and then my turquoise dress, and finally, my bright pink wedges.

Usually, I start with with the shoes when I think of outfits, but not this time! It actually took me longer than usual to decide on the shoes — and then when I saw the pink wedges, my brain went, “DUH!” I am fond of color-coordinating. 😉

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

When I came downstairs that day, Sam’s eyes went round. (Always a good sign.) Here’s how our conversation went:

Sam:  Wow. 

Jen:  I am taking that as a compliment.

Sam: You should! What are those colors?

Jen:  Turquoise and pink.

Sam:  Wow, I never would have thought to pair those colors together. 

Jen:  That’s why I love SIA challenges! I get inspired to try new things!

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

I also added a tiny bit more color through my earrings, which have turquoise and royal blue beads. And of course, bright pink lip stain, to carry out the pink from head to toe! 😀

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Details:

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

Librarian for Life + Style | Pairing pink + turquoise together

The backdrop adds a lot to the overall look and photos, as well. First of all, there’s the symbolism with the title of the painting, The Door Within (and there is a door actually in the painting, see here for the full painting). But the main reason I chose this backdrop was the bright lilac colors of the walls and door. Style bloggers LOVE a brightly colored wall, and I am no exception! This purple building is just down our street, so I had seen it before and thought, “I need to remember that building for a future photo location.” I thought it would be great as a backdrop for this challenge, plus it adds an additional color to my interpretation of the artwork!

Be sure to check out all the SIA interpretations on Erin’s blog tomorrow!

Linkups:  Hello Monday, Monday MingleVisible Monday, Shoe and Tell, #iwillwearwhatilikeConfident TwosdaysTurning Heads, A Good HUES-DayWho’s Wearing What WednesdaysTrendy Wednesday, What I Wore WednesdayThrowback Thursday, Top of the World, What I Wore to Work/Summer StyleThursdays Fashion Files, Thursday Moda, On the Edge of the WeekFashion FridayPassion for Fashion, Fun Fashion FridayCharming Friday, Friday Favorites