Tag Archives: The Gap

Wedding Friday – Blazer Over Dress.

9 Oct

Today I was thrilled to ATTEND a wedding. What a relief to be at a marriage celebration and not be worried about capturing pictures of every little thing!

I took this opportunity to wear a dress that I’ve owned for nearly a year but felt was too dressy to wear while working an event. I found this at the Banana Republic Outlet and after promotional discounts and my small employee discount on sale items, the dress was roughly $40. Great deal!

Because it is October, I planned to wear a Gap tuxedo blazer over the dress … and even though it ended up being in the mid-70s … I still wore it. It was SUCH a gorgeous day but I had to follow my inspiration!

Today’s inspiration comes from Blake Lively’s look:

My version of the blazer/dress combination:

Close up detail of my DIY purse from the previous post. On my shoes, clip on earrings. Just another use for the generous gift from my client!

A detail shot of my dress … the beaded collar is what I loved the most.

Aaand my hair. I used a different clip on earring  to cover my bobby pin. 🙂

Can’t even say how nice it was being a guest at a wedding! The wedding was glamorous, yet laid back … and the bride was GORGEOUS. I really loved her chic dress. It was sleek and simple, right up my alley!
Congratulations to Stephanie and Justin – You have a long, happy life ahead of you!

Outfit Breakdown.
Blazer: The Gap (Originally $98)
Dress: Banana Republic ($40ish)
Ring: Old Navy ($6.50)
Bracelets: Old Navy ($10.50)
Shoes: Banana Republic (Originally $98)
Nail Polish: OPI’s Bagota Blackberry on both fingers and toes.

Sometimes dressing for weddings in cold weather, even as a guest, can be tricky. Plan ahead! I really liked the structure of the blazer over my dress as opposed to a cardigan because my dress was a shift style. Even though I didn’t need the blazer after all, it still added a little something to my look. What do you think? Should blazers be used in work environments only? How do you feel about the blazer over a more formal dress? Is this something you will try?



Celebrating Emma Watson – Black and White Stripes

7 Oct

Celebrating Emma Watson. Yes, that’s right, the girl from the Harry Potter movies.

You may remember this version of Emma Watson.

Hermione Granger at her finest.

Now check out the latest version of Emma Watson.

Hello, awesome haircut!

I am totally in LOVE with this pixie cut on her. If I wasn’t attached to my long hair right now, I’d run out and get this haircut tomorrow. Someday.

Because I’m kind of obsessed with her new look, I chose to do a feature on her. I found this picture of her and I really enjoyed her sweater.

Wide stripes are frightening for a lot of people. They are bold and definitely make a statement.

I only have one shirt in my closet with wide stripes like the one she is sporting above … and I happened to purchase it for a Halloween costume. I was a mime last year. After I wore the shirt as a part of my costume, I put it in the dryer and it shrunk. I kept it because I thought I might choose to be a mime again some year … but today I pulled it out of my costume box and chose to wear it.

So there you have it. Bold black and white stripes. This shirt used to be a lot longer … the shrinkage has now turned this into a cropped shirt. Luckily those are coming back in style.

I’m really am happy to be seeing a transition from long tops to short tops though. Not that I didn’t like the long tops, but I’m ready for something new. I am a fan of this trend. Especially the loose fitting cropped tops I’ve seen. Not too cropped though, let’s not get crazy.

I was searching for pictures of intentionally cropped tops that I could post and I found this:

My shirt amped up a few levels. I’m not loving this shirt in particular just because I think the crop is too short and the sleeves are too huge. But you get the idea.

Here are a couple close ups of my outfit today.

I chose accessories with a little bit of edge, but let’s be honest, I could never take this the whole way. I just don’t have an edgy aesthetic. 

And just for clarification, no that’s not a coke spoon. It’s an antique salt spoon that I turned into a pendant. I don’t do drugs.

Outfit Breakdown:
Top: Forever 21
Spoon Necklace: Antique
“K” Neckalce: Adorn Me (location in Ann Arbor, MI)
Belt: The Gap ($9.99)
Jeans: The Gap (Originally $69.50)
Shoes: Banana Republic

I never thought I would wear this shirt aside from my costume. Not only because it’s not what I would typically wear, but also because it shrunk significantly in the wash. Thanks to the new cropped trend, I could make this shirt work. Don’t you just love how trends cycle? Not saying that you shouldn’t get right of old clothes but you never know when you’ll be able to bring out long forsaken wardrobe pieces!

Also, props to Emma Watson for her bravery when it came to cutting her hair. This bold pixie cut inspires me – and hopefully you – to continue taking fashion risks!


Overcoming My Disdain For Black Pants.

6 Oct

Okay, so … While searching through fashion inspiration online, I found this picture of Hilary Duff and really enjoyed what she had going on (aside from the fact that her pants appear significantly too long).

I thought this would be a good look to re-create … just one problem: I hate black pants. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not hating on black pants for being black pants … I just don’t like the memories that I carry with my black pants.

When I was in cosmetology school, we  were required to wear black pants every day. Ugh. That’s enough of a rut already. On top of that, we had to wear these big, ugly, parachute-esque smocks and closed-toe, black shoes. Because of this, I wore pretty much the same thing 5 days a week for about 11 months. Black pants are now my nemesis.

Attempting to re-create this look pulled on my creativity strings a bit considering I haven’t purchased a pair of black pants since 2007. I pulled out a pair from cos. school and after coloring in a bleach stain with a permanent black marker, they we ready to wear.

I really love the ones Hilary is wearing above, high wasited and wide leg. It works really well with the tucked in blouse … but considering I don’t own anything like that, I tweaked the look a bit.

Because the rise these pants is fairly low, I left my shirt untucked instead. Though in keeping with Ms. Duff’s look, I stuck with a blousy top. To give it some shape, I wrapped a scarf around my waist as a pseud0-belt.

The gold detail on the straps of my top is actually a pair of clip on earrings. One of my favorite clients at the salon gave me some of her Aunt’s old clip-ons that she had around her home. I’m so excited about them! Lots of fun things in store … 🙂

Here is a detail shot:

I also thought my sandals deserved a feature … considering this might be the last week I can get away with open toed shoes. I really love these. Dressier than a flip flop but just as comfy!

Outfit Breakdown.
Top: Target ($19.99)
Clip-On Earrings: Vintage and gifted.
Scarf: Gift, though purchased at Charlotte Russe
Bracelet: Forever 21 – Same as yesterday’s.
Pants: Forever 21
Shoes: The Gap

There we go. Black pants. I did it. There is a lesson in itself. Re-use old things you never thought you’d wear again. Give it another try. These pants were three years old and stained but as Tim Gunn would say, I “made it work”. Also, a few small additions to a simple top and it looks totally different! … Oh, the things accessorizing can do. Have fun!


Salon Workday – Professional yet Feminine

5 Oct

Happy Monday! Today I ran some errands in the morning and then had a short workday at the salon.

Shanty had a grooming appointment at noon and then afterwards Kai and I prepped for setting up our photography display at the Knapp’s Corner Starbucks. We had to make a trip to Office Max, Hobby Lobby, and our printing company so I didn’t want to look TOO dressy … but I also still needed to stick to our “no jeans” during the week policy at the salon.

I’m a bit of a risk taker when it comes to working in an environment where clothes are easily ruined. One splash of hair color or bleach and a garment is done for. I also don’t wear heels to work (usually). Sometimes I miss the days where I worked at the front desk as a receptionist because now I stand on my feet all day – not conducive to high heels. I also never ran the risk of damaging clothes back then. Keeping these things in mind, sometimes coming up with creative outfits for work is challenging.

Here’s what I sported today:
Shanty and I before her grooming appointment … my little fluff.

This shirt also can be worn off one shoulder, which I love. Not quite work appropriate though.

My hair-do. 🙂 Someday I’ll do some tutorials on easy styles! The clip is actually a pin that I purchased at a vintage store in Holland. I pinned it in like I would on a piece of clothing, and then secured it with bobby pins.

A close up of my belt. I made this for my 3 year anniversary – the same occasion I bought the flower pin from yesterday’s entry for. This belt is simply some beaded trim with ribbon attached. The ends of the ribbon are beginning to fray. I will have to buy something at the fabric store for that … one of these days.

Here’s how I originally used this piece:

A headband! I probably wouldn’t do this on a normal day, so I intentionally left the ribbon long enough to wear as a belt. I didn’t want this gorgeous trim to go to waste! And now that I’m seeing this picture, I really wish I had worn that pearl bracelet today. Shame!

Today in choosing my outfit, I started with my skirt and then built from there. I knew I needed to wear flats … then I added tights and had the bottom half all set. I pulled the gray top after scanning my closet and knew pale pink would be a good accent. I think it’s pretty clear that pale pink, gray, and I have been like this *insert crossed fingers here* lately.

Outfit Breakdown.
Top: The Gap (Originally $19.50)
Skirt: The Gap (Originally $49.50)
Belt: Homemade
Tights: Forever 21
Ballet flats: The Gap (Originally $39.50)
Pin: Vintage ($8)

Do you ever get lost when looking for something to wear? I know how that feels. Next time if you don’t know where to start, pick a single piece you want to wear and build from there!


Lazy Sunday – Date Night

4 Oct

Normally on Sunday evenings we host a study at our house focusing on Rob Bell’s Nooma videos. They’re pretty rad … check ’em out if you haven’t …

Well, tonight group was cancelled so Kai and I had a date night instead. Much needed! It seems like we only see each other when we are working this time of year.

Since these evenings are few and far between, I wanted to get a little more gussied up than I was this morning, while still maintaining some basic elements from my church outfit.

Here’s what I came up with:

I switched out my cardigan for a gray boyfriend tee and black pull over sweatshirt. The accessories are what punched it up a bit. I added my drop necklace and the same heels I wore a couple nights ago. I moved the flower from my belt to my hair. I got a comment on the previous post saying the flower was overpowering … so some of you might really hate it in my hair. Our waitress at dinner loved it, though. 🙂

Here’s a close up of my shoes … the heel is my favorite part. 

This is my favorite “going out” purse. I saw this at Banana Republic when it was still full price. Once I saw that it was on sale, I snatched it up before it was gone. I love the color, I love the size, and I love that I can wear it two ways …

Way #1

Way #2 …

Outfit Breakdown.
Jeans, Belt, and Flower: Same as before
T-shirt: The Gap (Originally $19.50)
Sweatshirt: Banana Republic
Necklace: Target ($19.99)
Purse: Banana Republic (Originally $75)
Shoes: Christian Siriano through Payless ($35)

I loved the mix of boyfriend style with flashy, girly accessories. Putting unexpected things together can create some really adorable outfits. Give it a try!

– Kayls.

Lazy Sunday – Cute and Comfy.

3 Oct

I was tired today. I considered not doing a blog post because I was tempted to dress scrubby … but I’m still trying to keep my goal of a post a day (or a least a post representing every day since I didn’t have time to do one yesterday).

This morning Kai and I went to church. Sometimes I like dressing up to church but today was one of those days that I appreciated that I go to a church where wearing jeans is a-okay. I put this together before going through some of the fashion inspiration photos I have saved on my computer … but once I did, I realized I combined a couple of looks I had saved.

I love Lauren Conrad. I’ll admit it. Her sense of style is right up my alley. Not too out there – just feminine and chic.
Here is a picture I saved of LC. I’m digging her casual white tee and jeans look. Gap’s signiture. And you all know how I feel about The Gap. 🙂

This is what I wore to church this morning:

Hair pulled back and glasses – there’s my lazy contribution to this Sunday.
Instead of a white tee, I wore a cardigan as a top. This is something I started doing about a year ago when I wanted to wear white but all of my white shirts were dirty. Instead, I buttoned up this cardigan and viola! Insta-shirt.

The shoes I wore today are one of my favorite pairs. They are super comfy and considering my dance background, I love that they look like ballet shoes. My flats from a couple posts ago are the same ones, just in black. If I find something I love, sometimes I will buy it in a neutral color and then also in something more fun. Some pieces look totally different based on their color. In this case, I knew I would wear both pairs often.

Here is another picture I have saved on my computer that is similar to what I have going on above.

I saved this picture because I like to make flower hair clips and have used them as belt accessories in the past. Someday I will do a DIY on how to make a clip like this and all of the ways you can wear it.
Today I wore a pin that I purchased to wear on my wedding dress for a photography session.

My fly is zipped, I promise. That would have been embarrassing.

Anyway, this is just a standard pin. I simply pinned it around my belt, not through it. You might remember this belt from my first post. I re-wear accessories often. I typically find one good staple and use it over and over and over.

Please note that I am wearing the same nail polish from Thursday. I rarely re-paint my nails before the previous polish chips. Who has time for that?

This look is really easy and adds a special flair to a simple outfit. Just the trick for my lazy Sunday attitude.

Outfit Breakdown:
Cardigan: The Gap
Belt: The Gap
Jeans: J. Crew
Flower Pin: J. Crew ($18)
Shoes: The Gap (Originally $39.50)

Yes, the pin was  $18. In my opinion, that’s a little pricey. Despite the fact that I purchased this for a specific purpose, I would have considered buying it anyway. I love using pins in various ways and knew I would get $18 worth out of it. I bought it in August and I would guess I’ve already worn it close to 18 times. That’s $1 a wear. Definitely worth it. If you find something that you love but are turned off by the cost, consider how often you will use it. Sometimes these purchases are worth it. Today the pin was the perfect thing to spice up my outfit.

Enjoying my day off,

Wedding Work Day – Indoor to Outdoor

3 Oct

We photographed a wedding yesterday. Only three more to go this season!

Now that it is getting colder out, outfit planning is trickier. Wedding guests don’t have to concern themselves with being outdoor appropriate. The most time they spend outside at an indoor wedding is walking to and from the car. However, as a photographer, we spend up to three hours outdoors … so I need to dress appropriately. But let’s be honest, I still want to look cute at the reception. Yesterday I got creative and wore the skirt I mentioned a couple days ago … here is my indoor/outdoor transformation.

Indoor – Posing for Kai as he tests in the lighting in the church. I also wore this at the reception.
Bare legs and deep purple, almond toe pumps.

I found this lace top at target and pulled it from the rack immediately. I love that lace is making a comeback. I’m all about the soft feminine quality of this shirt. Oh, and the belt, I wear it with everything. This won’t be the first time you see it.

and … Outdoor – posing for Kai as he tests the lighting outside.

Leather jacket, charcoal tights, and boots.
I still look cold … it was windy, 48 degrees, and sprinkling.  I chose flat boots because I was on my feet all day and knew I would need a break from heels for a bit. These worked perfectly especially since the ground was wet.

Despite the weather yesterday, we had a great day. We were on time and the couple was a joy to work with.  These few easy additions for our outdoor picture time kept me warm and upbeat!

Outfit Breakdown
Indoor Look:
Top: Target ($19.99)
Amber Necklace: Purchased in Mexico over 5 years ago.
Belt: Banana Republic (Originally $39.50)
Skirt: Target ($34.99)
Heels: Target

Outdoor Look:
Top, Belt, Skirt, Necklace – Same
Leather Coat: Banana Republic (Originally $298)
Tights: The Gap
Boots: The Gap Outlet ($19.50)

Are you attending any outdoor events this fall that you will need to dress warm for? Keep your eye out for pieces that you can layer for a fun, but most importantly, cozy, look!

– Kayls.