Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas



Merry Christmas everyone! I'm back from my trip to Germany and France and have finally recovered fully from the jetlag. I spent a delightful weekend in Paris that was cold but mostly sunny, and filled with great food and even better shopping (photographic evidence to come!). Now that I have a little time off I'm hoping to get caught up with my blogging and post some photos from my trip.

In the meantime here's a recent outfit featuring this cute new dress that I found at a shop in on Fillmore Street; it turned out to be the second of two long-sleeved purple dresses I bought that day. Ordinarily I would've avoided buying similar items, but this one is a much lighter weight dress whereas the other is more of a winter weight, and this was so deeply discounted that I couldn't pass it up. You'll be seeing the other purple dress in an upcoming post.

Wishing you a happy holiday season!


Dress: Kew
Necklace: Manu Lizarralde
Boots: All Black

Monday, December 12, 2011

Fun Filled


Here's a skirt-based outfit that made the grade for the walk to work. The skirt is dense and holds its shape well; thus there's no need for a slip, either for opacity or to prevent the skirt from clinging to my legs. To me that makes a world of difference, because half slips make an outfit feel like they're in need of constant adjustment. You've got multiple waistbands to deal with, and then you have to make sure the slip isn't hanging out at the bottom of your skirt hem or twisting around in some awkward way. I want to start experimenting with full slips under a skirt and top, because I think that might be a better option. There are so many things you never notice about outfits until you have to walk a long way in them.

I've had a fun-filled couple of days. On Thursday night Mark and I attended the annual holiday party at Anchor Brewing Company, where we ate delicious food, sampled the new Christmas Ale, and even got some VIP access into the distillery and the rooftop bar (thanks to my fabulous inside connection). Reporters from the Celebrator and 7x7 Magazine were in attendance, so who knows, Mark and I might even end up in their pages.

On Friday I had the pleasure of finally meeting Lisa, aka LPC, in person for lunch downtown. She is vibrant and intelligent and a delight to talk to; I felt like I'd known her for years. For all her talk of being a Sturdy Gal, I suspect she has a big streak of Arty Cousin lurking just below the surface, so I'm looking forward to going shopping together and seeing how much of that comes out.

On Saturday Mark and I attended my company holiday party at Foreign Cinema here in the city. I wore my Valentino dress with Wolford tights and Miu Miu shoes, a combination I've been wanting to put together for quite awhile. And yes, I was too lazy to take photos.

I'm headed off on my trip to Germany and France today; see you next week!

Jacket: thrifted
Skirt: Marc by Marc Jacobs
Boots: Ecco
Necklace: Wendy Brandes

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Excursion



Spencer is becoming quite the handsome dog, is he not? He's also more than twice the size he was when we brought him home. At about 8 months, he now weighs 65 pounds and is a couple inches taller than Georgie. Since his knee injury is still a problem and we can't yet have surgery performed on it (and would rather avoid it entirely if we can), he's now having regular sessions of therapeutic swimming in a heated pool. Seriously, if I had wanted children, they would've turned out to be the most spoiled assholes the world has ever known. It's a good thing for everyone that my nurturing impulses are focused on dogs.

A couple of weekends ago I went on a shopping excursion with a friend of mine who's also Mark's ex-girlfriend (yeah, you read that right). We ostensibly went shopping specifically to find her an outfit for her birthday party, but along the way I made a few purchases of my own. You know how it is.

This coral cardigan and teal pants were two of the spoils from our excursion. My friend and I spotted the pants right away, but in bright orange. When we got over to the rack however, I found that the teal pair was a lot prettier. They're a micro-corduroy fabric with a good amount of stretch, and are crazy comfortable. I've already worn them a few times and they've proven to fit in really well with my quick-conversion, walking to work dressing strategy.

Cardigan, pants: Anthropologie
Top: Express, a gift
Shoes: Fly London

Monday, December 5, 2011

Quick Conversion



One thing I've noticed since I've been walking to work is that I'm wearing pants a lot more often, I think because they feel less fussy -- there's no slip to deal with, or a skirt that's clinging to my tights, or blowing in the wind, or whatever. There have been a couple of times where I've changed my entire outfit once I got to work, but that involves a lot more hauling of stuff than I'm willing to do most days (especially since I often also walk home and thus have to haul everything for 6 miles). So my goal is generally to build an outfit where I can wear it mostly in its finished state, and change or add one or two things once I get to the office. Don't worry, I'm still looking for ways to make my skirt and dress-based outfits easy to wear for the walks, and I'll happily share any new tricks I hit upon.

This is an example of just the sort of quick-conversion outfit I'm after. I wore my Bastien short boots for the walk, and carried the tall boots as well as the white cardigan in my backpack. Then when I got to work it was quick and easy to convert the outfit for the work day.

Next week I'll be traveling to Germany and France on business (I know, I know -- what a sacrifice, right?), so I'm definitely going to be putting some of these new tactics to work for my travel outfits. In fact I think a couple of the pieces in this outfit will be making the trip with me. I'm going first to Dusseldorf and Strasbourg, and then spending the weekend in Paris before coming home. Dusseldorf and Strasbourg are for work, but the Paris weekend is all mine. Good thing I haven't started my Christmas shopping yet!

Tunic: All Saints
Knit pants: Club Monaco
Cardigan: 12th Street Cynthia Vincent
Boots: Modern Vintage
Necklace: Wendy Brandes

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Happy Feet



Here's an outfit that I put together specifically for comfort while walking to work. For the walk I wore my Bastien short boots, and packed the ones you see here (which are comfortable, but not 3 miles' worth of comfortable) in my backpack for swapping once I got to work.

The Bastiens have been getting a lot of wear lately, so much so that I recently went scouring both the internets and the stores in search of some additional walking shoes, because even the best pair can't be worn every day for 3 (or more likely 6, because I often walk home too) miles of walking.

I ended up with a pair of Ecco boots, which have the bonus of being waterproof, and a pair of Romika short boots, which pretty much feel like slippers, only with really good arch support. Both meet my criteria of being cute enough to wear with most outfits during the walk, or even for the whole day if I don't feel like carrying extra shoes. My feet are happy.

Dress: Red Dress Shoppe
Cardigan: H&M
Tights: Sock Dreams
Boots: All Black

Monday, November 28, 2011

Spirit



I wore this to work on Halloween, so as to be in the Halloween spirit and still not have to deal with a costume. It was a good call, because pretty much no one downtown wore a costume, and also because this was way more comfortable. And yes, Halloween was almost a month ago and I'm just getting around to posting this now. It has just been that busy lately.

If you're in the US, I hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving weekend. I certainly did; we spent a lot of time relaxing for a change, and for Thanksgiving dinner Mark and I went to Harris's for some delicious steak. OK it wasn't exactly a traditional meal, but I've made up for it by spending the last couple of weeks warming up for International Pie For Breakfast Month with plenty of pumpkin pie. It's always Thanksgiving when there's pumpkin pie.


Dress: Skunkfunk
Tights: Sock Dreams
Boots: Modern Vintage
Necklace: Untamed Menagerie

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Walking to Work

I thought today I'd share some of the sights I take in on my walks to work. Depending on the route I take, I can see all sorts of beautiful things, which makes the trip go by quickly for as long as it is.

A view of Japantown (known as J-town by locals)


St. Mary's Cathedral, aka the giant washing machine agitator and the site of the 
famous (or perhaps infamous) "two o'clock titty"


 Colorful paper lanterns in Chinatown. Normally I try to avoid Chinatown, 
but it's wonderfully peaceful in the morning before the tourists come out.


 The art deco-styled Pacific Stock Exchange downtown


The awesome Transamerica building, which looms over 
much of the area around where I work


The best views, not surprisingly, tend to come along with a fair amount of hill climbing, so if I'm in a hurry or am lacking energy (read: hungover) I can go through the considerably less scenic (though not without their charms) Little Saigon and Tenderloineighborhoods. I can also cut through a "new" neighborhood (which is really just the realtors' way of repackaging an old neighborhood to make it sound more appealing) called the TenderNob, but I refuse to acknowledge that this neighborhood actually exists. I mean think about it. As if the name Tenderloin wasn't bad enough already.


 A pretty park I often cut through where I can watch dogs playing 
and people doing their morning exercise. That's City Hall in the distance.


 An urban garden tucked in between some buildings in the Western Addition area.


A "parklet" on Powell Street near Union Square. 
Who needs parking spaces, anyway?


 Coit Tower atop Telegraph Hill. 
This is also visible from the windows of my office.


 Lotta's Fountain on Market Street. This was the meeting place 
for survivors after the 1909 earthquake.


 The Ferry Building isn't on my commute route, but it's where my coworkers and I often go for lunch. 
That's one of the "F" line streetcars out front. Not to be confused with cable cars, 
these are classic streetcars from all over the world that have been restored 
and which go up and down Market Street from the Castro to the Embarcadero. 
And take a really fucking long time doing it. 
Not a good transportation option if you're pressed for time.


The view from the Ferry Building isn't half bad, eh? 
This is easily my favorite lunch spot when the weather is good.


 If I'm in the mood for some steep hill climbing (and by "steep" I mean some of the streets have 
staircases instead of sidewalks) I can check out beautiful Grace Cathedral at the top of Nob Hill 
on my walk to or from work. If I'm lucky I might also spot the Brown Twins while I'm 
in the neighborhood; I've seen them twice already on my walks.


 The views from Nob Hill aren't too shabby either


 Looking into downtown from Nob Hill. Note the cable car; the tracks that they run on 
make a lot of noise because the cables run on a continuous loop underneath them. 
It's a little disconcerting if you don't know what it is.


 A different view into downtown from the north side of Nob Hill, 
with the Bay Bridge off in the distance.

I've actually taken to carrying my camera with me at all times because I see so many great things in my travels. I'll undoubtedly have more to share with you another time, but I hope you've enjoyed this mini-tour of San Francisco, or at least a 3-mile slice of it. I'll leave you with one more great view:

They look like angels when they're sleeping, don't they?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Dress for Any Season



I've done shockingly little (for me, anyway) shopping in recent months, mainly because of the consecutive large expenses of throwing a big wedding party and then buying a house. Moreover, because I'm much busier at work I have a lot less time to poke around on the internet and inevitably find pretty things to buy. This is undoubtedly a good thing; at my previous job I often felt that I shopped mainly out of boredom, and waiting for a package to arrive was pretty much the only thing I looked forward to there.

This dress is one of the only items of clothing I've purchased since May or June. The pattern in particular really appealed to me, because it can work for any season depending on what I pair it with. Pinks and soft greens would make it great for spring and summer, while jewel tones or burgundy will work for fall and winter. For this outfit I added the mustard yellow cardigan and burgundy socks to give it a fall look, but left my legs bare because the weather is still pretty warm.


Dress: eShakti
Cardigan: Anthropologie
Belt: a gift from Mom
Boots: Bata
Bracelet: Leslie Danzis

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Duster



I found this funky sheer zebra duster at a thrift store near my mom's house a few months ago when I was up there to visit. It was actually a dress when in combination with the long black liner that came with it, but I much prefer it this way. I made a couple of modifications: I hemmed it from straight across to the tapered hem you see here, and I added a pleat in the back to give it some shape at the waist. It was quite the boxy 90's shape before.


This was a perfect outfit for our gorgeous fall weather. It was warm enough outside to bare a little skin, but not quite warm enough to expose all the limbs in their entirety. Boots and socks and bare legs was just the thing.

Duster: thrifted
Dress: Max Studio
Belt: Lazarro
Boots: from Scoop in Copenhagen
Bag: Lucky

Monday, November 7, 2011

Adjusting



I'm still adjusting to dressing for my new gig; not so much for the workplace itself, but for the outdoor climate and the amount of walking I now do. In general I'm dressing in a more relaxed way than I was at my previous job, in part because working downtown gives me loads of options for lunchtime, and if I'm going to walk to them I want to be comfortable. But the other thing I've discovered is that I can easily walk to work, which takes just 10 minutes longer than riding the bus (my nearby bus routes aren't the speediest, and driving isn't really an option). My trip is 3 miles each way, so I get some welcome exercise, but consequently I have to create outfits with breathable fabric (to avoid sweating with my backpack on) and shoes that are either easily swapped once I get to work, or are comfortable enough for miles of walking. This is a challenge, because I'm not the sort of gal who will throw on sneakers with anything and swap them once I get to work -- the walking shoes have to look reasonable too.

This was not a 'walk to work' outfit, though it maybe could have been with some minor modifications. It was definitely before I got my latest haircut though, and you can really see my color growing out, as well as how long the back was getting (hence the recent post about Janet). Thankfully I've gotten it cut since then.

I've got a post in the works that will show you some of what I see on my walks to and from work. Believe me, it's a walk that I'm very grateful to be able to make! Working in the city is truly a dream come true.

Top: Forever 21
Skirt: LA Made
Shoes: Born

Friday, October 21, 2011

Shorts Suit


I wore this outfit to the after-work welcome party that my new group took me out for. Which means I waited 3 whole days before hitting them with a shorts suit that shows off my tattooed arms. I'm sure no one cares; our VP, who I worked with at a previous job, only asked, "Are those new?" Biotech is certainly one of the least conservative of the professional fields.

It occurs to me that I might update the look of this jacket by removing the cap sleeves and turning it into a vest. Does anyone have any thoughts on this? On the one hand the cap sleeves give me a little more shoulder width, which is flattering. On the other hand they're sort of puffy and only look good with just the right top. Would removing the sleeves make this piece more versatile, or is it cuter the way it is?

Jacket: BCBG Max Azria
Top: Max Studio
Brooch: Trifari (vintage)
Shorts: White House Black Market
Shoes: Bettye Muller

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Mixed Up



This was my "last day of work" outfit, which tells you just how old this picture is. I feel it's going to be a long time before I'm truly back in the swing of blogging and can post at my former pace. For now I'm just happy to be posting a couple times a week.

The last week at the old job brought glorious weather, which lasted all through my brief time off and the first weeks at the new job. The seasons are all mixed up here; after a cold, foggy summer we get most of our hot sunny days just before winter starts to set in. So just when I started to think I wouldn't be able to wear my sandals again until next year, the temperature spiked to the 80's and 90's and has mostly stayed that way except for a few days of some crazy rain. This is a great time of year to be a plant.

Dress: Desigual
Cardigan: Solemio
Shoes: Steve Madden
Bracelet: a gift from my sis

Monday, October 17, 2011

Janet



Recently I had the honor of being featured by the fabulous Sarah Von on her blog Yes and Yes. If you haven't done so already, go check it out!

Looking at these photos, which are now several weeks old, makes me realize how badly I need a haircut. Usually when I get my hair done I make my next appointment then and there, so as not to forget and let too much time slip by before the next cut and color. But for some reason the last time I forgot, and the other morning I realized that my hair has begun to look like Janet from Three's Company. Which was cute... in 1982.

Not exactly the look I'm going for in 2011, though.


Of course making the appointment has been on my to-do list for the last week and a half, but somehow I just haven't managed to remember to call during business hours. I'm hopeful that this is the week I'll actually make it happen.

My aunt gave me this cute top, which has a panel of sequins that show subtly through a layer of sheer chiffon. I like how the soft neutral color looks contrasted against the black shrug.

Top: Express
Shrug: Cenit
Necklace: from a glass shop in Venice
Skirt: Noa Noa
Leggings: Black Market Baby
Boots: All Black