Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Cold Weather: Five Pieces to Make You Warm and Cool

All of the sudden it is really cold here in Seattle. I think everyone is a little shocked...even though it is the end of November. We have been spoiled with a sunny, warm fall that was made us forget that winter was just around the corner. Krissy and I were a little bit freezing during this latest photo shoot as we skulked about her neighborhood and posed on my unsuspecting brother’s front porch. His house and the surrounding landscaping are so pretty we couldn’t resist.

This week we explored some layering pieces that work when its not pouring and you don’t need a coat…yet. Here is the skinny on looking cool while feeling warm…

The Poncho

I am a big fan of the poncho, and this gray knit one was perfect over the top of my bright tangerine cashmere sweater. The turtleneck and wool knit keeps you warm and cozy, plus you can still use your arms to carry things and function in your daily routine, unlike the glamorous yet stifling cape, which renders your arms pretty much useless. Suffering for fashion, right?

Boxy Cashmere Sweater and Faux Leather Tube Skirt

This style of sweater is a great update to the classic cashmere pullover. The cropped silhouette is not too cropped, but compliments a more fitted bottom, like skinny jeans or this Zara Faux Leather Skirt. I was enchanted by the bright tangerine color, which was unexpectedly beautiful with the deep blue/green color of the skirt. I mirrored the color with my favorite Tom Ford lip color, Cherry Lush. The skirt has a high waist, which is a perfect match for the cropped sweater silhouette.

Over The Knee Stockings

I became obsessed with these last time we were in Paris, where I found a lot of really pretty grown up over the knee sheer socks and stockings. I have worn them with everything from heels to short and tall boots. It is a chic and understated sexy way of dressing up your legs without the full tights look. I think it is also a dressy and original way to show off a great shoe. You can find a great selection of over the knee socks that are perfect for those of you who aren’t in high school anymore right here and here.

Lanvin Wedge Bootie

My friend Kelly Glanville and I always joke about how the wedge is the perfect shoe. Everything goes with it, it is always beautiful, and secretly super comfortable too. Everything looks better with a wedge. ☺ These suede Lanvin booties are my go to for skirts and denim, and they are a chic classic that always looks cool.

Fuzzy Wuzzy was a Mitten

I have a little collection of fingerless gloves and mittens—although I am really a mitten girl. I always have a pair stashed in my handbag because this time of year you always need them and you also need to drive and dig for things in your handbag. So, why have to bother to pull gloves off and on? Fingerless is the perfect answer to cold weather practicality. I bought this knit and fur pair on an 80 degree day on a visit to California, so you know I might be a little into them. Here is a similar pair that I might be adding to my collection.

Instagram Inspiration

I love Leandra Medine and her blog, Man Repeller. I follow her on Instagram and not long ago she took a snap of her wrist wearing a really beautiful Bvlgari Black Matte Serpenti Watch, which I loved. I googled serpent and snake watches and ended up with this perfect little vintage snake timepiece off of eBay for the price of a happy hour cocktail. Granted, it is not Bvlgari, but it keeps perfect time and is a beautiful little vintage watch. Inspiration from someone with great style can give you a unique style of your own.

It is easy to be distracted by Black Friday nonsense and Christmas carols blasting at you before you even have your Thanksgiving turkey cooked, but I really am trying to live in the moment this year. I am grateful my Dad and brothers will be at our house, and will be missing my sister and her family who are staying at home this holiday. And my Mom and her memory are with all of us every time we gather; there isn’t any way to fill the empty space that is left at our table and in our hearts. This week we are making new memories too that make me thankful for the loving family and friends I have. Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Neutral Zone: A Case for Camouflage

Photography by Kirsten Beeksma Morse

Long gone are the days when camouflage was strictly utilitarian; today the pattern is high fashion, adorning everything from chic coats to gorgeous high heels. From Valentino Rockstud handbags to Burberry makeup palettes, this military inspired pattern is super chic with metallic details and sequins or seen in lux leather and soft cashmere. It has become, like animal prints, another "new neutral", making it the perfect pattern to update your look. 

FEED + Faribault Tote

I would love to say that I discovered this amazing FEED + Faribault Tote, but I actually spotted it on my fashionable friend Andrea Augustine and consequently became obsessed with it. Andrea uses it as her work bag which is what I am doing as well--it is the perfect combination of form and function. The Faribault camo wool material from the heritage mill and leather corners make it stand out chic, and the tote's shape fits an amazing amount inside. I stuffed my tablet, wallet, various lipsticks and a leather coat in it at one point, which made me feel a little like Hermione Granger (for all you Harry Potter heads) when I began pulling things out again.

For those of you unfamiliar with FEED, it is a company founded by Lauren Bush Lauren in 2007 with the idea of creating products that would help in the fight against hunger by connecting people to the cause directly.  Each FEED product has a number stamped on it that signifies the amount of meals or micronutrient packets provided with its purchase. My bag has a 300 stamped on one of the leather corners, signifying that the purchase provided 300 meals. It is a purchase you can truly feel great about. 


dusica dusica boots and Habitual Denim

Last year my husband and I landed in NYC in January and it was one of those winters where you could feel the cold through your boots, plus the streets were really icy.  All of the footwear I had packed were like wearing ice skates, so I dashed into dusica dusica in Soho and bought this pair of lug sole boots. Perfect. Not only do they look cool (in gray--hurray!) they kept me on my feet while on the slippery streets of New York. The uber chic Italian made brand carries shoes and clothing for both men and women. I love the look of mixing greens with gray and neutrals, (or even with a pop of bright), so I chose to wear these Habitual wax denim in a very subtle camouflage print. This J Brand pair is a great alternative. Add a little leopard for a fun pop of pattern--this J.Crew Wild side Wide Bangle has the perfect amount of subtle sass.

anthropologie Shimmer-Sleeve Anorak

I have a little bit of a coat obsession, so I am constantly on the lookout for something that is just a little different. I love the look of sequins in the daytime, especially when you pair sparkle with something low-key, like a soft sweater or a pair of denim. Anthropologie is always a good place to find unique pieces, which is where I discovered this Hei Hei Shimmer-Sleeve Anorak. The sophisticated swing coat style and the edginess of the distressed army material make the perfect foil for the cream sequin patterned sleeves. FYI, the website today said it was sold out but I found quite a few of them in the actual store in downtown Seattle, so it is worth checking into if you love it. 

Neutrals needn't be boring, and utilitarian doesn't have to mean practical--just seeing someone in a pair of camouflage Rockstud Valentinos may be proof of that. I like wearing camouflage with pinks, blues, and reds too. Whether the camo pattern is bold, like the tote, or subtle like the denim, it definitely ups your style game. Cheers.