Madewell Sale – it’s so good.

About two years ago, I read this book, and it was a game changer:

Image result

My closet and drawers were STUFFED with clothes I never wore, but was hanging onto for all the wrong reasons:  great designer, got for an insane price, was gifted but haven’t worn (yet), will fit into someday (ha!) . . . you get the picture.  I got rid of everything I didn’t absolutely love, and it changed my life.

I rarely buy clothes, but when I do, I only buy things I love.  I noticed this morning that my summer staples are looking a little sad, so I was happy to see that this Madewell sale is alllll the right things, and at the right prices.

Whisper Cotton Scoop Tank Top in Suzi Stripe

whisper cotton scoop tank top in suzi stripe- $9.99 (reviews say it runs big so I got an xs, for reference)

striped afternoon dress – $24.99 (based on the size chart I picked up a s)

magnolia tie-back dress – $29.99 (again, I ordered a s – this dress looks like it should be loose)

central long-sleeve shirt in lansford plaid – $19.99 (reviews say it runs large so I ordered an xs)

convertible ribbed gloves – $4.99 (I KNOW.  It’s June.  But they are $5 and in December I will be so happy to see these!)

plaid cozyweave scarf – $4.99  (So great for layering and accenting!)

Have fun shopping! xoxo

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New Year? New workout clothes!

It’s January, guys!  Know what that means?  Awesome workout clothes on super clearance at our favorite stores!  I was just in Athleta, Lululemon, and Lucy and there was so much inventory on clearance – it was heaven!  Here are some of the items I scored:

Athleta Ponte Skinny Pant on sale for $39.  This pant is so good it’s ridiculous – looks like skinny jeans, feels like yoga pants.

Athleta High Rise Bloom Chat Tights for $28.  I love the high rise, as it keeps all my stuff covered and warm.

Athleta Frost Chat Tight for $28.  These are so COOL.

Splendour Bra

Lululemon Splendour Bra for $39 online (but I got  mine for less in store!)  I should note that I got five different tops at my local Lululemon for under $30 each, but I am not seeing those prices online.  It is worth checking the sale rack if you have one in town.

It is January, after all, so how about a few options to cover up with post-workout?

This cashmere cowl neck is 75% off ($85!) at Nordstrom Rack.

I love the slouchy V-neck in this 360 Cashmere sweater, also on sale at Rack.

I love the lean look of this Quinn Cashmere sweater, on sale for $70 at Nordstrom Rack!

Vince cashmere for $150?  YES.

You need these pants.

Why beat around the bush?  You need these pants.

My mother and sister-in-law both got these Athleta City Jogger pants in the spring, and loved them so much.  SO much.  I heard about them constantly.  Even though my birthday was in August, they bought me a pair, but they made me wait to get them until a few weeks ago.  Of course, an August birthday does not lend itself well to wearing pants because of the HEAT and the HUMIDITY and the SWEATING . . .

But.  This weekend, I had the house to myself and was getting down to some serious organizing and cleaning.  I tend to get a bit chilly in air conditioning, so I put on the pants.  I have to admit, I kinda thought my in-laws were nuts – how could a pair of pants be that great?  Also, the cuffing at the bottom reminded me of the sweatpants of the 80s so I wasn’t expecting great things here.

YOU GUYS.  These pants are life.

Not even kidding.  They are silky and light and comfy and they look amaaaaazing.  And, best of all?  They are on SUPER SALE!

I may have ordered a few more pairs.  (I totally did.)  You need a pair.  Or three.

Order Athleta City Jogger pants here.  (Side note:  the swim collection is on super sale as well, and you might as well check that out at the same time, right?)

Reclaiming My Awesomeness

When I got dressed this morning,  I put on one of my favorite dresses.  I found it at Nordstrom Rack on sale at an amazing price, and I love the way it fits.  It looks stylish, but it is so soft it feels like a sweatshirt.  I found it in late fall, so today is the first day I wore it without tights or leggings underneath.  I paired it with robin egg blue J.Crew ballet flats, put my hair in a high messy bun, and went to work.

As I ended my work day, I went to the post office to mail a few letters.  On the way in, I approached a man who was walking in the other direction.  He looked at me and said, “Now THAT is a DRESS!  WAY to GO!”

Taken aback, I smiled at him and said, “Thanks,” and walked past.

For the next twenty minutes I couldn’t make up my mind how to feel.  Was he complimenting me?  Or was he being sleazy?   My mind raced.  The way he said it wasn’t creepy, so it was probably a compliment.  But what if the dress was too short?  What if he was saying it looked bad?  All my inner insecurities reared their ugly heads and I frantically called my best friend (who didn’t answer), one of my sisters (who also didn’t answer) and my other sister (who did answer).

After hearing the story, she said, “Of course he meant you rocked it!  If you looked terrible, he wouldn’t have said a word, or would have secretly taken a picture of you with his phone to make fun of!  Settle down!”  I didn’t believe her, so I took a snapshot and sent her a shot of what I was wearing, just to be sure.  Here is what I had on:

myoutfit

My sister couldn’t believe that I had been so paranoid about a simple, cute dress.  She laughed at my worries, and helped me to see how silly I’d been.

A bit more reflection, though, made me begin to wonder why I had been unable to take a compliment, as it most likely had been meant.  Why did I assume that when someone told me I looked great, I assumed they didn’t mean it?  Where is my self-esteem, and why did I doubt myself so severely?

I contrast my reaction to those of my kids, who 100% always think they look awesome.  My daughter usually dresses like this:

outfit

Let’s be clear here – this outfit is not an anomaly.  She believes that the brighter and fancier the outfit, the better.  She will add color and bling and ribbons to no end.  And pink – the more pink the better.  She never has a doubt that the clothes she puts on each day are 100% amazing.  Her confidence is rock solid.

When does that change?

I assume that when I was a child, I felt the same way about what I wore.  When did I get so insecure about my appearance?

It’s not good news when an actual compliment makes me lose my mind.  I have only one answer:  I lost my awesomeness!  This, of course, is completely unacceptable.  I am doing my best to raise a daughter who doesn’t let the world around her mold who she will be.  I want her to be strong, independent, and totally herself.  How can I teach her to do this when I don’t believe in myself the way I should?  My resolution is to try to reclaim my awesomeness over the next few weeks.  I am going to try to remember what it was like to be confident in my choices, and try my hardest to believe more in myself.  Also, I need to learn to take a compliment, apparently.

Loving Kimonos

This time of year, I am all about layers.  I am freezing in the morning, and hot by mid-afternoon.  They key for spring is light layers – nothing too heavy or bulky.  Enough sweaters already!

Have you seen all of the amazing kimonos in the shops currently?  I am seeing them everywhere.  As with all things trendy, I am looking for budget-friendly options.  I save my splurges for pieces that defy trends.  Here are my favorites:

Pom Pom Kimono Jacket - Xhilaration®

Dolman Sleeve Kimono - Fashion Union

Home to Work to Workout Wear

I play so many roles in my day, dressing for everything is no joke.  If I had a separate outfit for each role, I would change my clothes three times a day, or more.  This is simply not possible – the laundry alone would kill me.  Over the last few years, I have managed to figure out a style that can take me from work, to my morning workout, back to work, out for lunch, and to my after school activities with my kids, all with minimal fuss.

To begin, put on your workout clothes.  Then, layer as follows:

Loose tops
Loose tops are my BFF.  When I get dressed in the morning, I put on my workout gear then layer a loose top over my workout shirt.  When it is time for me to get my sweat on, I just take the loose top off.  After class, I give myself a quick clean and put the loose top back on – ready to head back to work or lunch or life in an instant.  The key is that the loose top be long enough to cover my bum.

My favorite loose tops are from Zara.  I picked up a few in Paris and I get compliments on them ALL the time.  Here are some of my favorites for Spring:

Image 1 of KIMONO SLEEVE STRIPED BLOUSE from Zara   Kimono blouse $49.90

Image 1 of OVERSIZE SHIRT from Zara Oversize Shirt $79.90

Image 1 of COLOR-BLOCK BLOUSE from Zara   Color-Block Blouse $59.90

Leggings
We all know that a good pair of workout leggings is an investment piece.  A poor quality pair shows the world everything you’ve got when you are in downward dog.  A good quality pair of leggings is completely worth it, as they wear well and look amazing.  Here are some of my favorites:

Wunder Under Pant  lululemon wunder under pant $82-92

C9 Champion® Women's Compression Knee Legging  C9 leggings $17-18

Boots
Boots pull it all together, friends.  When the weather gets warmer I will transition to ballet flats or sandals, but this time of year, boots are my jam.  They are easy to pull off for class and dress up my outfit just a bit.

Frye boots $215 on sale!!!

  Steve Madden boots $130

Leg Warmers
I did an entire post devoted to leg warmers previously, and my obsession remains.  There is just *something* about the way leg warmers look when combined with leggings and boots.  Not to mention, when I get to barre or PiYo class and I wear my leg warmers during warmup, I always get compliments on them.  If you don’t have a pair or three, stock up.

Scarf
Top the look off with a loosely wrapped scarf.  If you don’t know how, do a google search – it is super easy, I promise.  The best part of a scarf is the versatility – I have used mine as a shawl, a headcover during a popup rain storm, a blanket for my chilly daughter during soccer practice, and of course, as a scarf.  It adds a bit of polish to the ensemble.

Women's Solid Oblong Scarf  Basic scarf $15

This look should take you from home to work to workout to soccer practice, all without major wardrobe changes.  Happy shopping!

Wardrobe Swapout!

It is *almost* time for my favorite part of changing seasons – the wardrobe swapout!  I started this tradition a few years ago, as crowded closets made me totally stressed.  I realized that I only ever wore what was right in front, because sorting through a crowded closet was impossible.  My clothes were wrinkly from being crammed together.  Constantly pushing aside clothes that were seasonally inappropriate was frustrating and time consuming.

So, I bought three big tubs for the off season clothes (one for each season), and now I only keep clothes in my closet that are seasonally appropriate.

This is great on several levels:

  1. My closet is airy and I can actually SEE my clothes.
  2. Opening a seasonal box is kind of like opening a present.  I am so excited to see pieces that I love!
  3. It gives me great perspective on what to keep.  When I take something out of the tub, if I am not super-thrilled to see it, I think pretty hard about whether it is time to send that piece to Goodwill.
  4. Unpacking everything and laying it out lets me think about the outfit combinations that I could put together.
  5. I can identify the pieces that I would like to purchase for the season – SUPER great.

All of this helps me with mindful shopping, which is a practice I try to implement as much as possible.  I used to be an impulse shopper, buying whatever caught my eye or was on sale as I went by.  Now, I try to be more purposeful.  For example, in looking at my wardrobe for spring, I know I want a pair of ripped, coated black cropped jeans.  So, I’ve been searching for the perfect pair, and I think I’ve found them!

If you haven’t tried it, give this method a try.  I promise that it will give you some great perspective on your wardrobe, and an airy, spaced out closet is such a a little luxury.