Posts Categorized: recommended reading

Lovely Links: 3/28/14

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My book is on sale over at Amazon for $14.01!

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If buying boots is an exercise in frustration because of your narrow/wide calves, short toes, small feet, or other challenging-to-fit features, check out Poppy Barley, a company that does made-to-measure boots and shoes, complete with a fit kit that you use to measure your legs and feet. Read a review of the process here. Spendy, but potentially worth it for a truly custom fit.

And in other fun vendor news, Silly Old Sea Dog creates handmade, vintage-inspired clothing for women, and just launched a plus-sized line that includes dresses, skirts, and petticoats though UK size 28. (Via Blog to Be Alive)

One of my favorite reads of the week: A Feminist Defense of Cinderella.

This bold, graphic outfit is incredibly striking and chic. Great use of black!

A little on the rambly side, but still a great reminder that no one should ever be made to feel shame about how she/he looks. And that when you say nasty things about how others look, your words have impact.

Amy Odell (of The Cut and now Cosmo) talks about what the print industry can learn from online writers about sharing resources. (Cheers, Katie!)

I doubt I’ll ever be able to afford a pair of Atalanta Wellers, but I’ll dream of them.

Did you know that the WPA once tried to create a standardized system for women’s clothing sizing? You probably DID know that the system they devised never went into broad use.

In her lecture “Silhouettes and Signals,” fashion illustrator Danielle Meder says, “Considering this biological instinct to favour ‘natural’ beauty, it’s fascinating how human beings have used fashion throughout the centuries to subvert our own proportions. We will use any technological means at our disposal, whether it’s padding, scaffolding, compression, surgery, propping, binding or prosthetics. We are hungry for novelty and constantly trying to transcend beyond our physical selves, which is why the fashionable ideal often diverges so dramatically from the more conventional ‘natural’ beauty ideal.”

I adore the look of tough, military-influenced pieces paired with floaty, blush-colored ones. Also love olive green and lace together.

Super simple way to instantly expand your wardrobe: Remember that you can wear many of your dresses as skirts.

This post offers 21 questions to help you consider what you’d like to know about your body image to help you build a more positive one.

Anyone else checked out the Isabel Toledo for Lane Bryant collection? Thoughts?

Fabulous tips for cleaning light and white leather bags and shoes.

“From that point forward, my eyebrows were a perpetual source of insecurity. I’ve clocked many hours hunched near my bathroom mirror, tweezers in hand, and had all manner and stages of brow shapes, including a full-blown unibrow and the much-maligned ‘tadpole brows.’”

Also from Rookie, this moving story about a woman who chose to have liposuction at age 18 thinking it would improve her body image, but found that it didn’t. This story is moving and upsetting, so read with care.

On the Fox 9 Buzz this week, we chatted about spring transitional dressing tips.

Model Erika Linder illustrates the performative aspects of gender by doing both masculinity and femininity in a commercial for JC Jeans Company.

Vaguely related: How to apologize for misgendering someone.

Zingy yellow and bold stripes make for an enviably spring-y ensemble. Love the pops of pastels, too.

Designer L’Wren Scott committed suicide recently, and she was one of the first designers I ever quoted on this blog – about body image, not fashion. Wendy’s post talks about Scott’s career, ideas about success, and the mixed response to her death.

This app turns your Instagram snaps into nail art. WOW.

Not Dressed as Lamb rounds up eight redheaded fashion bloggers to watch. Would’ve liked to see some size diversity here … Nicolette rocked the auburn a while back and Ana experiments with reds. Who else would you recommend?

I’m still dumbfounded by this. Elyse needed help adjusting her depression and anxiety medication, and her doctor did two preposterous things: Completely disregarded the sexual side effects of one medication and obsessed over the potential weight gain associated with another. A resounding WTF from me.

I now know more about why fabric pills and how to prevent pilling than I ever thought I would.

“While [internalized body dissatisfaction] does apply to men as well, in many ways it’s wrapped up in the conviction that women’s appearance is the most important thing about them, the idea that women’s bodies don’t belong to themselves, and the underlying message that women should always be taking up less space. These toxic ideas have serious effects on women’s mental health, and can affect their behavior to such an extent that they have physical repercussions as well.”

Two of my all-time favorite bloggers LPC of Privilege and Une Femme of Une Femme d’un Certain Age decided to style each other. I completely love the results – LPC here and Une Femme here. Always fun to get input on your choices from a friend with a different figure or aesthetic from your own.

And from the Department of Random: This vending machine makes pizza in less than three minutes. So I will be installing one in my kitchen.

Additionally: There’s a science to pop music, and don’t you doubt it. This Slate article explains, using music theory, why “Teenage Dream” hit #1.

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Lovely Links: 3/21/14

The Budget Babe rounds up some darling pastel pieces for under $50.

Kasmira’s floral-print maxi is glorious, and so perfect with a chambray shirt and chunky Western belt.

And in other floral news, love how Thamarr has styled this dark floral dress for spring.

Reader J pointed out that bloggers who write about being small-busted aren’t as common as bloggers who focus on resources for large busts. You can find some great roundups of small busted bloggers here and here.

Here are some super simple tips for keeping your leather bags in tip-top shape.

My latest piece for Rewire is about PBS icons and their signature styles. Mr. Rogers! Julia Child! Norm Abram!

“I think that #banbossy is well-intentioned, and that there are many valid perspectives on the campaign. I also think that Sandberg has done feminism a service by spurring meaningful discussion about the achievement/leadership gap. But focusing on a single word isn’t the best way to teach young girls how to persevere in the face of intense pressure to step out of the spotlight and into the perceived safety of the shadows.”

I never would’ve thought to pair orange with mint green, but it totally works. Especially with some denim in the mix.

In light of this week’s post about wedding dresses, I was excited to find this roundup of comfy bridal shoes.

Having shopped at COS in London and worn my two sweater tunics TO DEATH over the winter, I’m stoked to hear the chain will be coming to the US soon.

What a fabulous rain-ready outfit. Complete with wellies!

Two stylish friends swap fully styled outfits and discuss how it feels to wear someone else’s clothes and how it feels to see a pal wearing your own duds.

Love this roundup of 10 recycled/upcycled hair accessories for spring.

Shay implores her fellow plus-sized women to think twice before complaining about high price points, especially when those prices are attached to items that have been meticulously designed to work with a variety of plus-sized figures.

As usual, Kelly hits on the perfect mix of polished and casual.

This roundup includes eight great places to shop if you petite and plus-sized.

This in-depth piece on cellulite explores what it is, explains why it is prevalent in women and typically on the thighs and ‘tocks, and summarizes common “treatments” including input on what may or may not work. I find the use of the word “over-fat” odd and unecessary, but since cellulite is something that so many women of all shapes, sizes, and ages have and hate, I wanted to share this. It’s a great overview and fabulous reminder that cellulite is natural, normal, common, and nothing to be ashamed of. (Via Feminist Figure Girl)

Yet another gorgeous crop top has caught my eye – striped and paired with a full skirt. I feel a copycat outfit coming on …

Would these 10 principles for building the perfect wardrobe work for you?

Her body was not wrong.

Imaan knocks it out of the park yet again with a flowy shirtdress over skinny jeans.

AP contributor Cassie has opened an Etsy shop, with some fabulously sparkly handcrafted jewelry!

Attempting to deconstruct hierarchies of taste in the fashion industry reminds people of the precariousness of their position. Fashion’s power figures enjoy being arbiters of style and taste, and fear that we—the unwashed masses—may wake up one day and be able to determine for ourselves what looks good. Still, I don’t necessarily think that fashion criticism is a bad thing in itself because I value the historical knowledge that writers bring into the conversation, even if I don’t agree with their overall observation. But now that I am aware of the social logic behind taste, and how closely taste is linked to cultural capital, I no longer have to wonder why these critics’ opinions differ so greatly from my own.” (Via Final Fashion)

Natalie has held onto these silk strap sandals for 13 years. And they still look fresh and chic.

An interesting perspective: Self-hate as a path to self-love.

Worn Through offers a brain-bending roundup of articles and papers on fashion and individuality, touching on Converse All-Stars, co-branding, and more.

Lemon print sweater. SUCH love. And perfect with black accents.

Here are five lessons a good tailor can teach you about fit and figure.

The Closet Feminist is ready for a new conversation about cultural appropriation in fashion.

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it 67 bajillion times: Florals and stripes are magnificent together.

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Lovely Links: 3/14/14

Spring is on its way! Considering a closet clean-out? Thinking of taking your style in a new direction? Let me help!

  • Online consults start at $185 and are a great way to get your wardrobe sorted and your ideal style crystalized.
  • In-person consult slots for clients in the Twin Cities area are available beginning in April - book now!
  • My book is a fantastic tool for understanding your current style and merging it with your ideal, on your own terms.
  • The mini-makeover PDF will walk you through a process that can help kick-start your style

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Still a few spots for the Chicago scarf tying workshop this Sunday – only $35 and you get a free, signed copy of my book! Won’t you join us?

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“… treating ‘girly’ things (or, worse yet, the girls and women who enjoy them) as inferior only makes the problem worse. It is just another way of saying that high heels are a reasonable indicator of a woman’s worth – and not only that, but also an indicator that a woman has less worth.”

Related: “Even seemingly mundane choices were seen as statements: Minnesota state Sen. Ellen Anderson was the first woman to wear pants on the Senate floor—in 1993. Hillary Clinton’s uniform of pantsuits (you know, a suit like a man wears, but for a woman) spawned endless think pieces. These wardrobes became the subject of political fascination not because the clothes gave any actual insight into these leaders as individuals, but because they reinforced the fact that they were women first and people second.”

Clearly, this is the best body shape chart ever created. (Via YLF)

Gingham and buffalo plaid make for a simple, sleek print mix. Of course, gingham and florals mix well, too.

This fascinating piece explores actress Lupita Nyong’o’s role in the evolving paradox of black femininity.

Satchel-style bags always tempt me, and I’m drooling over these handmade “fatchels” from Rhodesian of Edinburgh.

Many folks have asked me how I can wear flats and heels in summer with bare feet. Here are five tips for making this look work.

This post about offering unsolicited input and criticism of others’ choices and how this action can veer off into shaming touches on fashion policing, grooming, food choices, and more.

And related to THAT is this comic about the trap of telling women that their dressing choices are anti-feminist. Also pie.

Shey shows off a fabulous neutral mix with a chic black base.

“Self-acceptance doesn’t mean that you cannot enjoy dressing up or making yourself up. Self-acceptance and style do not have to be mutually exclusive. If you want both style and self-acceptance in your life, you can navigate those desires in a way that allows you to stay true to you while enjoying the creative expression style allows you, and, as all good things do, it begins with balance.”

Autumn considers a chemical peel. Then doesn’t get one. Then wonders why she considered getting one in the first place.

In response to some online snarking related to bra fitting and sizing, MissShapen composed a smart, levelheaded, and thorough response. Then she assembled THE BRAVENGERS. Love, love, love it. (Not safe for work viewing.)

Here’s a super simple DIY for an infinity symbol necklace. Even I could handle this one, friends. (Via Dollar Store Crafts)

A slightly less simple DIY? Sewing up your very own tulle skirt. Erica’s spotted a pattern with four gorgeous variations. And Patti shows us that tulle skirts can be worn with class at all ages.

Here are a few ridiculous outtakes from a recent outfit photo session.

Jean offers a review of the Limited’s new petite offerings based on her own experiences purchasing and wearing a few staple items.

Nobody rocks a jumpsuit quite like Cyn. Her strapless polka-dotted number is probably my favorite, but I love them all!

When I disclose this disability to men who are not in the medical profession, however, I almost invariably get the exact same response: ‘Well, you don’t look disabled. You’re very pretty.’ Given that most of the men in my social circles are other writers, you would think the existence of a writer who is physically unable to write longhand would merit a mention, that there is something more to discuss here than my aesthetic qualities. You would even think, perhaps, that there’s a smidge of a heroine’s story in there, a narrative of someone who overcomes a serious roadblock in order to pursue her dreams and do what she loves, a protagonist who has a dragon to slay daily. You would think that authors would pick up on this. They don’t.”

Good to know: Monochromatic (one color) dressing is different than achromatic (without color, as in black, white, gray).

This abbreviated history of the power suit is a fun read.

Capitol Hill Style has a series that includes Elected Official (splurge), Hill Staffer (middle), and Paid Intern (budget) options. Love this recent roundup of ankle-strap flats.

The Style Crone is in possession of what just might be the most gorgeous coat ever created by humans.

“While fashion-forward types are coming around to the idea of a man wearing a skirt, it’s generally accepted only if it’s styled in a way that is appropriately masculine: with biker boots, sewn in traditional Scottish plaids, if it maintains a ‘straight’ silhouette (as opposed to A-line), or if it echoes ancient (or folkloric) menswear.”

Loosely related: Yet another commercial illustrating how femininity is “feared and reviled” by men. A succinct and powerful essay accompanies.

In response to the recent Target/Photoshop debacle, the ladies of Beauty Redefined revisit some other retouching disasters and talk about the impact that altered images of women’s bodies have on our collective self-image.

I love that Melanie carries her DeWalt toolbox like an It Bag. What a rock star.

Three of the amazing women I work with in LOTT have launched LOCUS, a meeting ground for people from diverse backgrounds to engage with one another and to examine our common needs and common opportunities. Their first event is coming up on March 27!

Over at Hair Romance they’re discussing whether it’s worth the hassle to seek out a curl specialist to cut your curly hair.

Moto, skinnies, leopard, booties – check, check, check, and check. Love everything about this outfit.

Shopping your own closet sounds great in theory, but how do you do it? Kat shares her tips.

“Many women like me bide their time until their age suits what they have to offer the world. What’s funny is that the arbiters of this society that puts women down for not being young and pretty enough thinks they’re punishing young women who don’t fit the mold by ignoring them early. What they’ve actually done is given them the tools they need to thrive as older women.”

Time magazine thinks Mad Men’s Peggy Olson is TV’s most relatable feminist. So does this mean that some people aren’t secretly wishing Leslie Knope was real AND available for best-friending?

Tanasha’s simple, chic ensemble is making me long to haul out my own boyfriend jeans.

And from the Department of Random: Why does your nose get stuffed up one nostril at a time? You know you’ve always wondered.

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