Your New Spring/Summer Go-To Outfit: Graphic Tank + Midi Skirt

When I find an outfit combo that is on repeat for me, I love sharing it with you. Think of it as one hot mess mom trying to help out another.

And a working hot mess mom at that. It’s the end of the school year for us teachers, and our patience for taxing tasks is like slim to none. That’s why “momiforms” are such an integral part of my wardrobe. I don’t want to think too much about getting dressed, but at the same time, I have a bad day when I don’t like my outfit. It’s quite the problem…

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Enter graphic tank/tee + midi skirt + mules combo. It’s the perfect dressy casual look that works for so many occasions.

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OLD NAVY tank, LULAROE Lola skirt, LUCKY BRAND mules, STELLA & DOT necklace

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To make the look even more casual, I may try knotting the tank. And seriously, an outfit combo that makes me feel like a million bucks AND is this comfy? Sign me up.

That One Time I Spent $119 on Pants

Guys, admittedly…most of my pants are cheap. Case in point: every single pair of jeans I have on heavy rotation cost me less than $40. And quite honestly, I’m not absolutely in love with any of them, but they do the job.

But recently, I have discovered Evereve (late to the party, I know…), and my opinions on pants have changed. I actually tried their Trendsend service recently, and if you follow me on Instagram, you saw through my stories what I was sent and what I ended up keeping. One such pair of pants were utility camo pants: the Sanctuary Pull On Trooper. I’ve linked them HERE. I’m a size six, and the medium is a great fit for me.

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I initially had sticker shock. Like what? $119? But as I get older, I realize there is so much value in investing in basics that you know you can style in multiple ways. The fit in these pants is amazing, and as I talked about on Instagram recently, my number one body insecurity is how big my legs are. These pants are actually quite flattering to my leg line and slim me out. SCORE.

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Here are some questions I ask myself before I invest in a piece for my wardrobe (jacket, pants, top, whatever):

  1. Can this piece work for nearly all occasions I could dress for? I could easily wear these pants for a casual look or dressed up for work. It’s all about styling and accessorizing. 
  2. Do I have pieces in my closet RIGHT NOW that I could pair with it to create at least three outfits? The answer for me was yes. As you see in this post, I styled them with a denim top, but a basic tee or graphic tee are other options. 
  3. Do I absolutely love the fit? Yes, I do. I loathe pants shopping, so that is why Trendsend appealed to me. I like how they’re both figure-flattering and slightly loose. 
  4. If I could find the cheaper version, would I be as excited about it? Am I truly gaining something by investing in quality? For me, I have never found a more budget-friendly utility pant option that was as flattering on me. Most of them cling to my thighs and no…just no. 
  5. Would I be sad if I did not purchase this piece? Oh yeah. You’ve got to snag those pants that make you feel like a million bucks. 

I find asking myself these questions has helped me really curate a wardrobe that works for me. I hope these questions will help you, too. All the best, dear friends!

The Closet Staple Most Everyone Needs

The Closet Staple Most Everyone Needs

When I have downtime, my brain just CANNOT focus. I always tell myself now is the time to focus. But then I start thinking about every little question that has popped into my mind over the last three months. I wonder what personality type I am on the enneagram. How do I style that blazer? Is it time to get rid of that jacket? Ooh…that Tarte mermaid eyeshadow palette is so pretty. What should the kids and I do this summer? Should I give macro counting another go? And this is just like a 10-second snippet.

Obviously, I am living my best life on spring break right now…and that for me involves reading, writing, and online shopping in sweats, all while sitting by the fire. Spring seems to be fashionably late.

My spring break has freed up more time for me to write and to think about my personal style. Yes, I do think about style a lot, for many reasons: 1. I try to blog about it every so often when I can; 2. I do quite a bit of styling in my side gig; 3. Having a firm understanding of my personal style makes getting dressed a whole lot easier in the morning; and 4. Feeling good about what I’m wearing = confidence.

One aspect of my style I know to be tried and true is my love for jackets. I LOVE a structured jacket more than anyone you probably know. There is something about them that just works. But more specifically, blazers have actually caught my attention lately.

Blazers used to be synonymous with shoulder pads and ’80s for me. But blazers have come a long way, my friends. Get this: they can actually be really versatile and flattering.

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BLAZER: Free People, TEE: LuLaRoe Christy, NECKLACE: Stella & Dot Rebel Pendant, JEANS: Old Navy mid-rise Rockstar (unavailable online right now), BOOTIES: Target (old)

I recently bought two blazers on sale at Nordstrom, and my favorite of the two is this FREE PEOPLE UPTOWN GIRL BLAZER, pictured above. I am a major fan of a black blazer, too, but having more feminine options allows you to play with styling a bit more. To me, this blazer’s color (a dusty rose) makes it a great feminine option to add to your closet. I also like the menswear cut. It’s longer and covers my hip, which I really appreciate. I am a pear shape, and the longer length creates a more flattering silhouette, concealing my biggest problem area.

Adding a few blazers to your closet is not a bad idea. I love a blazer over a dress for a job interview. Teachers, that’s also a great look (blazer + dress) for supervising school dances. I also like to dress a blazer down by adding a graphic tee and jeans.

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In my look pictured above, I found a middle road for Easter Sunday…I added a gray LuLaRoe Christy Tee and black denim (Old Navy Rockstar…the perfect jeans for moms on a budget who still want to be cool). No Easter dress for this girl since it was FREEZING, and we got like 4 INCHES of SNOW that day.

Side note: Yes, this blazer is pricey. But it happened to be 30 percent off when I bought it, and honestly, when you see unique pieces that you love, it isn’t the worst thing to splurge every now and then. I fell in love with the colors, stripes, and cut of this one and knew I’d be disappointed if it went out of stock. It works for a few occasions I would need to dress for: job (I’m a high school English teacher), church, date night…and probably more I’m not thinking of right now.

So here’s your assignment: find a blazer that works for your body type and the occasions you need to dress for….before you get distracted. I know. That may be hard to do, but it’s worth a try.

Styling Your Black Leather Jacket for Spring: Just Add White

Leather jackets just feel right to me. They are thicker than most spring jackets, so in the Midwest, more warmth is a total win. I spend 95 percent of my life cold, so they work for me in that regard. I also love how they work for the edgier side of my style, but I try to avoid looking overly biker mama-ish. (So not a biker mama. I have two kids, I’m a teacher, I enjoy collecting pens, and I go to bed before 10…).

One way I like to style them for spring? With crisp white skinny jeans/pants and neutral booties. My first instinct is always to wear black booties, but if I’m looking for a lighter look, the taupe bootie balances out the edge of the jacket, making the look more seasonally appropriate.

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Here I’m wearing the newest leather jacket to my collection, which I snagged as part of my Trendsend box from Evereve. My top is a LuLaRoe Lynnae, which I’m wearing oversized (usually a size small, sized up to a medium). My jeans are Rockstars from Old Navy (I think they’re a few years old), and my booties are a new Target find. The Universal Thread brand at Target (these booties and another pair of shoes I snagged recently) has a Madewell/Lucky Brand vibe to me, and I’m really digging that bohemian/classic feel.

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Are you even a Mom blogger if you don’t torture your kids by taking so many pics?

Find Your Glitter Belt

Isn’t it weird how style works…how you buy something out of your stylistic comfort zone and then end up questioning your entire personal style? Is that just me??

As amazing as it is to know and OWN your personal style, I would argue that an equally as amazing feat is taking style risks. It’s also a great way to break up a mundane daily wardrobe.

I love black, gray, and olive…I’m admittedly a neutral-loving fool. But I am also very intrigued by blush pink and have been really into velvet as well. Enter blush colored velvet Amelia dress.

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I love a structured jacket…in fact, I’ve been talking about them for years as one of my favorite closet staples. But since I have several basic jackets in my rotation (six LuLaRoe Jaxons and counting…seriously. It’s that good.), why not add an embroidered one? Better yet…why not add one with embroidered unicorns?

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My daughter Johanna is in a unicorn phase, which I LOVE, and I get major style points from her on this one.

Another way to break out of a style rut and have a little fun in your wardrobe is to think back to your old self and what you once loved stylistically. When I was in high school, I had this glitter belt I would wear every day. I have always loved glitter, but let’s face the harsh reality that glitter isn’t always workable in a wardrobe of a 34-year-old working mom. Admittedly, a little glitter goes a long way. That’s why when I found these ankle booties accented with glitter, I fell in love.

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I purchased mine from Groopdealz at a major discount, but I’ve linked the same pair at Kohl’s.

So now it’s your turn. Think about what you have been considering adding to your closet, but you have been reluctant to do so because it’s not your norm. Sometimes those little wardrobe additions make all the difference. Also take a minute to think back to your former self. What was that one piece or one accessory that you seriously loved in your younger days? What essentially is your own personal “glitter belt”? Unfortunately, I think we all get very caught up in these unwritten societal rules of what not to wear. I think there’s always a way to add in what we love and make it appropriate for any occasion or age.