My Instagram Break, Fall Wish List, and What I’ve Been Up To Lately

coat check chicago and vintage dooney & bourke

Hey, guys. First of all, I just want to say thank you. Thank you to everyone who shows up here and reads what I have to say, whether you’ve been reading from the beginning or this is the very first post you’ve ever seen. It means a lot to me that you spend a little part of your day here. I know I don’t post as frequently as I promise and that my blog isn’t as beautiful or professional as so many others that you could be reading, but I love doing this for you. I love connecting with you through the experience of getting dressed. So thank you.

Second of all, I wanted to tell you that I’ve been writing and rewriting this post all week, banging my head against the wall trying to get it just right, and it just wasn’t happening. This space has been a little too serious lately, and I’m in a fun and playful mood with my wardrobe these days, so I thought it might be a good time to lighten things up and try something different.

So today you’re getting something a little more fun and a little less focused – just a chatty ramble about what I’ve been up to lately and how my wardrobe is shaping up for fall. I hope you like it.

I TOOK AN INSTAGRAM BREAK

Taking a week off of Instagram was so good for my brain. I was really starting to feel overwhelmed, and honestly, kind of inadequate, so taking some time away was a healthy choice. I read books, I wrote stuff, I finally caught up on Bachelor in Paradise – it was great! What was especially good, though, was getting to spend some time with my closet without Instagram influencing my decisions. I really focused in on my personal aesthetic instead of what’s hot on Insta these days, and I was able to make a fall wish list that is a. reasonable and b. reflects my actual tastes. Here’s what’s on my list:

  1. An oversized wool blazer (status: on the hunt for a good vintage one)
  2. A pair of plain black boots (status: managed to convince Everlane to send me a pair – more on that below)
  3. A vintage Dooney & Bourke bag (status: acquired! I bought one on Poshmark, and one was sent to me by my thoughtful friend Katie, who found one in her parents’ house and thought I might like it)
  4. Warm base layers (status: acquired! I went a little nuts on turtlenecks this fall, but I spent all of last winter feeling cold and wishing I had better base layers, so I don’t regret this decision)
  5. A few warm pullover sweaters (status: will probably pick up one from the soon-to-be-released Tradlands collection)

J. Crew Tissue Turtlenecks

I QUIT MY SPREADSHEET PROJECT

But NOT because I wasn’t enjoying it. I still heartily endorse #spreadsheetwardrobe as a fun and effective way to pre-plan your outfits, but September is a volatile month in this part of the country, and when I guessed it would be reliably summery into October, I was wrong! Instead, we got a hurricane. It’s been rainy and cloudy and a little bit cool for over a week now, so I broke out the turtlenecks and had a party. I might bring the spreadsheet back again when the weather evens out a little bit come November or December. For now, I’m having fun being creative playing with the season of moody colors and layering.

I EDITED MY CLOSET

As much as it may look like I’m getting new things all the time, my closet is still really small. I started this wardrobe journey with a closet full of fast-fashion that really wasn’t serving me. I felt like all my clothes were mediocre at best, and there were very few things in my wardrobe from my pre-blogging days that I actually truly loved. So, as I’ve been buying new things and accepting partnerships with brands that I like, those old clothes have been going steadily into the donate bag, and my wardrobe has become significantly more sartorially satisfying.

I always envisioned this project as a gradual, but complete overhaul of my wardrobe. Gradual only because I don’t have the kind of money that lets me replace my entire wardrobe overnight, What Not To Wear style, but complete, because my ideal style compared to what was actually in my closet did not match at all. With a little mindfulness and a lot of #hustle, I’m on my way to where I want to be without having incurred any credit card debt.

This week I pared my current wardrobe down to 30 items. Some things went back into storage because they’re done for the season (like my flax linen mini skirt and my yellow wrap dress) but most things got removed from my wardrobe altogether and were donated or thrown away, depending on the shape they were in.

donated clothing

I GOT SOME AWESOME PANTS

Earlier this year, I slid into the DMs of Bill+Jay Clothing to tell them that I loved them and that I’d be really interested in a collab if they were planning on doing any this fall. To my surprise, they humored me, and sent me a pair of pants (their first pants ever!) to test out before the fall line officially dropped.

They are my favorite pants of all time. That is not an exaggeration.

They’re 100% organic cotton and so, so comfortable. They have a really attractive high waist and side button closure, an adorable notch hem on the outer ankle, and just an overall tailored and unique look. They come in petite and tall sizes, and they are surprisingly dog-hair resistant for a pair of black pants. The first day that I wore them to work, a stranger in the office bathroom stopped me to tell me how much she liked them.

I’m not just hawking these pants because they were given to me for free (although free pants are always very nice to receive). I love love love getting to support small, artisan makers by either purchasing from them when I can, or getting the word out about them on my blog. Bill+Jay are local to me, which makes them all the more special in my book, and they’re just overall wonderful women making beautiful, ethical clothing with such fastidious attention to style and detail.

The Kate Pants from Bill+Jay are now available in their online store for $174.

bill and jay pants and ARE studio bag

I GOT ACCEPTED TO EVERLANE’S AFFILIATE PROGRAM

Here’s how this went down. I knew that I wanted a pair of boots this fall, and when Everlane announced that they’d be adding a boot to their Day shoe line (along with the heels, high heels, gloves, and mules), I had a feeling they’d be perfect. At $225, I knew they were more than I’d be able to afford on my own, so I took my chances at applying to the affiliate program (which anyone can do right from Everlane’s website, by the way), and when I somehow got accepted (AHHHHHHHHH) I immediately begged the affiliate manager for boots.

Again, I am not really sure why she humored me, but she did, and a pair of Day Boots in black are on their way to my home as we speak. I’ll be doing a full review of them here on the blog sometime later this month.

I already wore a lot of Everlane garments (all purchased by me) to begin with, but starting now, there will be more dedicated Everlane reviews here and those reviews will contain affiliate links. If you want to buy things from Everlane and support me as a blogger at the same time, please use those links!

That’s all for today’s ramble, friends. I hope it was a fun read. Sometimes I try to imbue these posts with so much meaning that they feel exhausting to even outline, so I wanted to try dialing it back and writing to you casually. What did you think of this post? Would you be interested in reading more like this? Let me know.

Many thanks to Katie of The Tingley Edit for helping me edit these photos into something presentable. Check out Katie’s blog and Instagram for cool-girl style that is much better than mine.

-rr

 

 

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