Lovely Links: 1/29/16

LOCALS! I will be hosting a fundraiser for the women’s leadership group that I co-chair – Leaders of Today and Tomorrow – at the Uptown John Fluevog store!

There will be raffles, treats, demos, and if you donate to LOTT you get to take home a piece of jewelry from my collection. This is a ticketed event, all proceeds to LOTT – get your tickets here. Don’t delay, it’s a small space so tickets are limited.

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Weekly Kitty:

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Peeking.

A blanket scarf, jeans, and kicks look fabulous for weekend rompings … though my ankles are getting cold just looking at Medge!

Beth is also working the blanket scarf trend, though her outfit is more office than weekend.

“What irks me is the creation and repetition of a new set of rules. You MUST love yourself and your curves. If you do not glory in every part of your body, you are a loser. Body positivity might simply produce another set of regulations, another way for women to fail. At the same time, the focus often remains on physical appearance and seems superficial. Is it really a radical act for me to claim that my body is perfect from the bottom to the top? I don’t think so, but maybe I am not the target audience. I do not hate my body and I never have. Nor do I think it is flawless. I do not believe that I am beautiful. Ever. Is that really a problem?”

I swung by Nordstrom Rack with my mom over the holidays, and was surprised by how many made-in-the-U.S. items I was able to find.

Speaking of, I wish all Fryes were domestically produced, but sadly many are outsourced. Still worth looking, though, as styles like this killer Sabrina Buckle (also here) and most colors of the classic 12R boot are made in the U.S.

Telly mixes black and white prints, leopard, and rich teal in her gorgeously glam outfit.

On About.com, I wrote about prints and patterns that NEVER go out of style, and rounded up a list of the best celebrity-designed clothing lines.

I’m also not the only one who feels like polyester gets a bad rep. Not the fiber of torture it used to be …

Do you have a “standby” outfit that comes to the rescue when your dressing creativity is tapped out?

Proof that a sequined skirt and top with sequin detailing can look superb and surprisingly subdued.

How you treat yourself is so important.

Nadine talks about how cutting her hair just after college pushed her toward cross-dressing.

Long necklaces causing “gap and hook” issues over your bust? This gal has the solution.

Now THAT is a masterful print mix. Joi’s thrift-inspired pattern mix is also inspirational.

With my new shopping practices, I’ve been hitting eBay HARD lately. Even my favorite sustainable shopping resources are failing me in the sweater department, and as we enter deep winter I find myself in need of thick, heavy, cozy, wind-blocking sweaters. eBay has set me up with both Irish and Icelandic knits, all gently used.

I might also be checking The Realreal obsessively for chunky knits. Maybe.

This post and comic break down myths about acne – namely that if you have it, you’re doing something “wrong” – and talks about why judging and shaming people who have acne is misguided.

“Created by Wear Your Voice Magazine, #BeyondBeauty is a campaign that hopes to challenge brands that promote body positivity to include a more diverse range of women in their advertisements. The campaign includes a photo series which features 18 women of all body shapes.”

On Mad Mimi, I talked about when it’s a good idea to redesign your newsletter.

Alison’s arty blazer and windowpane dress make a dynamic duo. Also love Rowan’s polished look with windowpane pants and a cozy turtleneck.

Here are two things that have absolutely nothing to do with each other.

I just plain loved Magdalena’s tribute to David Bowie.

Camel and mauve with silver accents – such a lovely, delicate, and unexpected mix.

I’m pretty sure I stumbled across Artmasters on Pinterest, and when I’m shopping for my imaginary self I ogle their rings. This lab-grown black “diamond” ring is spectacular.

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for alreadypretty.com. See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details. Sustainable options are either used, handmade, made in the U.S., artisan made in non-sweatshop conditions, or made using sustainable/fair trade practices.

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Insomniac Sale Picks: Wingtip Ankle Boots

*In this late-night feature – which will run on Tuesday and Thursday of each week – I’ll gather up three fun items that are currently on sale online and share them with you! I would LOVE suggestions: Stylish wide-width pumps? Classic v-necked sweaters? Chandelier earrings? Petite dress slacks? What would you like to see featured?*

Leilani requested a few picks for light colored wingtip booties, so here we go:

 

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Bucco DANNA Slouchy Wingtip Ankle Boot – was $120, now $39.99

I’m putting this boot front and center because it ticks both boxes, but will admit that I’m not familiar with this brand. The style is all man-made, so vegan-friendly, and there’s a zipper on the other side of the shaft. Available in U.S. sizes 5.5 – 10. Women’s wingtips in widths are practically non-existent, but I know Leilani was looking for a 10W, so these men’s Cole Haans could work., as could these Stacy Adams.

brogue boots

Oliberte Lalina – was $140, now $121.59 – $130

Oliberté is a sustainable brand supporting workers’ rights in sub-Saharan Africa, and I was thrilled to find a wingtip pair from them to include tonight. Love the mini wedge and weathered leather. Available in Euro size 36 – 41 on sale, and at full price on Zappos and in both grey and tan on the Oliberté website.

ankle boots brogue

Sebago Claremont Boot – was $165, now $29.95 – $135

These are super cute, but this version is only available in a handful of sizes. If you’re willing to go slightly darker, you’ll find grey and a light burgundy, as well as two versions in cognac brown. Darker shades including black, chocolate, and dark grey available, too. Size availability varies by color. This style has a higher heel and only comes in dark brown, but is made in the U.S.

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Bass Danni Wing Tip Gored Boot – was $139, now $27.99 – $120

These remind me of Blundstones – which do come in a brogue – but are more affordable. I love the simple, sleek, pull-on design and versatile cognac color. Also in black in U.S. sizes 7 – 11. Size availability varies by color.

Other not-currently-on-sale resources for wingtip booties:

  1. Amazon – This is a challenging one, so big buckets for our other resources. Search Amazon for both wingtip and brogue options.
  2. ASOS – Light colors aren’t readily available, but cute brogue boots like this burgundy pair are.
  3. YesStyle – Lots of vegan-friendly options like this pull-on pair.
  4. And if you wear larger sizes, try some men’s styles.

**Disclosure: Actions you take from the hyperlinks within this blog post may yield commissions for alreadypretty.com. See Already Pretty’s disclosure statement for more details. Sustainable options are either used, handmade, made in the U.S., artisan made in non-sweatshop conditions, or made using sustainable/fair trade practices.

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How to Mix Neutrals

I’ve begun updating some of my greatest hits posts so they’re more current. This is one of them!

how to mix neutrals

At this point, my palette is ALL neutrals with splashes of navy, burgundy, and olive here and there, so this is a topic that’s close to my heart. There’s something so chic, elegant, and relaxed about mixed neutrals and I find that combination of traits irresistible.

When I set out to create a wash of neutrals, here are my personal rules of thumb:

THREE OR MORE TO A BATCH

Already Pretty outfit featuring leather jacket, heather gray tee, cargo sweatpants, long pendant, J.W. Hulme tote

An outfit comprised entirely of neutrals will look sophisticated and intentional if you include at least three distinct colors. In the outfit above, I have on a brown leather jacket and boots, gray top, and olive pants. I might be able to add one more neutral as an accent – the grayish-blue of the tote kinda fills that role – but any more than that might tip the scales into neutral overload.

This is a very loose guideline, since many outfits with only two neutrals look very chic. The key with two is to repeat at least one of them somewhere within the outfit. Like so:

asymtunicjacket_outfit

Black jacket, gray tunic, black leggings, gray bag. The repetition makes the look unified and the choices seem intentional.

If you’re mainly interested in mixing just black and brown, the easiest shortcut is to pick ONE shade of brown (either chocolate or tan, not both) and utilize it at least twice within the context of your outfit. Or if brown is the base color, utilize black at least twice within the context of your outfit. Again, that repetition creates intentionality. This formula constitutes a great way to practice mixing neutrals and train your eye to accept shades of brown and black as complementary.

LIKE UNDERTONES

Already Pretty outfit featuring waxed denim moto jacket, Woolovers turtleneck sweater, plaid slouchy pants, ankle boots

Cool grays and warm cognac browns can definitely be mixed, but I find it easier to pair warm with warm and cool with cool. Look at the neutral garments hanging in your closet. You should be able to tell which ones have cool undertones (whites, blues, and greens in their color mixes) and which ones have warm undertones (reds, yellows, and ivories in their color mixes). Pair like with like and you can’t go wrong.

TEXTURAL VARIETY

Already Pretty outfit featuring olive green jacket, tan knit dress, brown ankle boots, brown tassel handbag

Since neutrals are soft and easy on the eyes, all-neutral ensembles can read a bit bland. A great way to spice ’em up is to add a variety of textures: Leather, wool, slippery silk, nubby tweed, rough linen, smooth cotton. Pieces with embroidery, pick-stitching, and other 3D detailing also add textural interest.

One of the things I like best about my all-neutral wardrobe is that everything goes with everything else. Shapes may not be complementary and the occasional warm- or cool-undertone gray stirs up trouble, but overall I can wear everything together and it works. Neutrals have a reputation for being dull, but they needn’t be. Mixing them skillfully is easy to do, and can create some seriously chic looks.

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