Monday, June 30, 2008


Today's outfit was completely inspired by the movie Secretary, which is one of my all-time favorites. In fact, the top is even called the "Maggie" secretary blouse; it's from my oft-frequented site The Red Dress Shoppe. Adding the chunky Gabriella Rocha t-strap pumps made this ensemble my own, though. The skirt, from Max Studio, has a cute row of kick pleats in the back that absolutely make the piece; I've had this skirt for years and have gotten a tremendous amount of use out of it.

The skirt is not high-waisted, as the short blouse requires, so I faked it by adding my wide black belt (also from the Red Dress Shoppe). The bag is from Victoria's Secret.

I'd have loved to wear the outfit just like this all day, because I thought it looked great without anything over it, however the frigid office temperature necessitated adding this cropped cardigan from H&M. The office freeze is something I've been dealing with for the nearly 3 years I've been at this job; we're in an old building and the HVAC system is fairly archaic. Thankfully next week we're moving to a brand new building, where I will have a view of the bay, and the airport. Now all day I can watch the planes taking off and daydream about where they might be going.


On Saturday I had 2 events to attend, for which I wore variations on the same outfit. First up was a birthday party for Mark, a wonderful, adorable guy I just started seeing a couple of weeks ago. We really seem to click and I'm super excited about the whole thing, and well, he's probably going to read this so perhaps I shouldn't say too much. Trust me, he's awesome, and I'll undoubtedly be mentioning him again. Anyway, this is what I wore to his party. I wanted to look cute without being overly dressed up, so I put together this combo of jeans and mixed neutrals, with a few accessories to add some flash.

The black drape-neck top is from Sunhee Moon and the khaki top is by Susina. The scarf is Banana Republic, the jeans are Lucky, and the shoes are by Bobbi Blu. I paired the striped shoes with some zigzag socks for a little fun pattern mixing. The belt is a dark brown faux-croc, which added another mix of patterns with the scarf draped alongside.

Next up was an engagement dinner party for my best friend Laura, who's appeared on this blog before. The bride and groom-to-be took the entire wedding party to dinner at a very nice Vietnamese restaurant in the SoMa neighborhood, so I needed something dressier than jeans. First I tried just swapping the jeans for a skirt and adding some fun patterned stockings, but I felt that the flats were still too casual, so I traded them for boots.

I adore these boots from Modern Vintage. They were ridiculously expensive and a splurge I didn't really need to make, however I've gotten a lot of use out of them and they're remarkably comfortable. I just love the cuffed tops; they remind me of pirate boots. Also of note with this outfit was the fact that the tops of the stockings had a little touch of purple, and although nobody could see them, I like the fact that they matched with the purple under-layer of the skirt.

Friday, June 27, 2008


Georgie insisted on being in the picture today. Normally she just ignores me and lays in her bed while all the morning preparations are going on, but today she poked her head around the corner and then casually walked right up and plopped down next to me.

Today's outfit was a lot of fun to put together. I employed the strategy of taking an underutilised garment and building an outfit around it; Kasmira also discussed this approach recently. In this case it was actually 2 items, the skirt and the green top.

I bought this little lime green top expressly to go with this skirt because it came with a purple and green patterned belt. However, the top also had belt loops sewn on that placed the belt right across the ribcage, which wasn't comfortable and didn't really even look very good, and then the whole thing just smacked of being too matchy-matchy anyway. Last night I removed the belt loops and pulled out my favorite teal belt to pair with it, which I felt was a big improvement. There's something very satisfying about altering an article of clothing to make it work better.

Green top: La Redoute
Skirt and purple tank: Sisley (from Benetton)
Hat: Noa Noa
Shoes: John Fluevog

Thursday, June 26, 2008


This dress is actually not a dress at all, but a skirt. Although the fabric and texture are lovely, and although it's from Ralph Lauren and was undoubtedly very expensive, its near-ankle length makes me feel like a hippie, and I truly loathe hippie styles. The skirt was a gift from the crummy ex-boyfriend I've mentioned before; I seem to have had this problem a lot, where men I've dated try to dress me up in styles they prefer, rather than choosing something I'd like. They'd have been well advised to pay closer attention to my personal style, or else let me buy my own damn clothes. But I digress.

The skirt has hung in my closet, forlorn and looking like something Diane Keaton would've worn in the 60's, for many months now. Then a couple of weeks ago E inspired me to try simply hiking it up and wearing it as a dress. Voila! It is now the perfect length! I plan on making some modifications to it in order to permanently transform it into a dress, but for now I threw a shirt over it and belted the whole thing, which worked just fine.

The striped button-down is from Promod, and the sandals are by Sofft. I thought today's outfit was particularly inspired, but was surprised not to get so much as a single comment on it all day at work. I suspect that many of my nerdy colleagues simply didn't 'get' it. Between the pattern mixing, the combining different colors of blue, and the menswear-style shirt contrasted with the feminine dress, it was more than their scientifically savvy but fashionably retarded brains could deal with. However, vindication was mine this evening when, making a stop on the way home, a woman went into raptures about it in my local yarn store. When afterwards I was able to talk my way out of getting my car towed (oops, was that a 'no parking' sign behind that tree?), I figured I'd done well with the outfit.

Wedding Shoes

I bought these shoes a few years ago to go with an outfit I wore to a friend's wedding, and haven't worn them again until today. I discovered the hard way that they're really not suited for a day filled with walking and climbing stairs; however, they look fantastic enough that I resolved not to let 3 more years go by before I wear them again. Next time though, I'll make sure I check my calendar more closely the day before.

The silk scarf is from Banana Republic, sheer navy top by Cotton Candy (via the Red Dress Shoppe, which is apparently my theme this week), skirt from Sunhee Moon, and shoes by Steve Madden. Underneath the sheer top is a simple beige camisole with lacy details at the top. It's weirdly liberating to wear underwear in full view at work.

I love the detailing on this sheer top, and I thought the orange skirt and ethnic-inspired accessories gave it a more modern look. It occurred to me today that I've only ever paired this orange skirt with navy; next time I resolve to pick a different color.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008


This top is so stretchy and comfortable; it feels a lot like bathing suit fabric. Perhaps this is what inspired me to go with a tousled, beachy hairdo today.

Surprisingly, mussed up hair is a lot more difficult to achieve than perfectly-groomed styles. I used to not be able to do it at all until my hairdresser taught me the trick. I'd read in various fashion mags that you're supposed to crunch your hair as you're drying it; what those mags don't tell you is that it really only works when you have curly or wavy hair. My hair is naturally straight; the texture and random waves produced by crunching fall out if I so much as look at it wrong. The trick my hairdresser taught me is to get the hair very hot with the blowdryer, grab a section and crunch it, but don't let go until the hair cools. That way the waves are "set" before you let gravity start working against you. Once it's all dry I add a little texturing paste, then spray on a little hairspray and crunch it some more while the hairspray is still wet.

The green halter top by is by Ktoo (via The Red Dress Shoppe), black shrug by Weston Wear, skirt from an unknown manufacturer, shoes by Camper. Clearly there's no way I can get away with wearing this top at work without the shrug, and even then I think it might be pushing the envelope a little, but such is my way. I wish I could find more shrugs like this; it's lightweight and sheer, and adds just the right finishing touch without completely covering what's underneath. This would be an ideal outfit for going out straight after work, as all I'd have to do is remove the shrug. It also has to be one of the most comfortable ensembles ever.

Monday, June 23, 2008

On The House

Today's color combination was inspired by Kasmira's outfit last week; I liked the way the combination of gray and yellow softened the black accents. This lightweight gray hoodie is from a local import store, yellow cardi by Solemio, pinstripe trousers from La Redoute, shoes by Steve Madden.

I got this belt from the Red Dress Shoppe for free; I had ordered it at the regular price, but when it arrived there was a note in the package saying that all the belts were blemished, so it was on the house! The blemishes are very minor, so I happily wore it today. Since the entire thing except the buckle is made of elastic, it's hands down the most comfortable belt I own.

Friday, June 20, 2008

O, R They?

I have a guest making an appearance on my blog today -- my best friend Laura. Last night she broke her key off in her door and couldn't get into her apartment, so she stayed with me. I got to dress her up in my clothes this morning, since of course she didn't have anything with her.

Laura is wearing a sheer gold top by Susina, leopard tank from Old Navy, skirt by LA Made, and sandals by Azura. I'm wearing a cotton layered tank by Max Studio, cardigan by e-klah, and sandals by Camper. The skirt is from an unknown manufacturer.

I have a tough time wearing this tank because the color is exactly the same as O.R. scrubs. When I put it on, all I can think of is that scene in Rushmore:

Max Fischer: I like your nurse's uniform, guy.
Dr. Peter Flynn: These are O.R. scrubs.
Max Fischer: O, R they?

The bright orange cardi seemed to tone down that hospital look.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Tribute to a Teal Belt

I've gotten a lot of mileage out of this teal belt, and I haven't even owned it very long. Which makes me wonder, whatever did I do without it? I've now paired it with just about every imaginable color from purple to orange to this khaki green and pink outfit. It's well made and comfy, and it only cost me about $12 at Therapy, one of my favorite local clothing stores.

These vinyl (or whatever they're made out of) belts tend not to be very durable, I've found. A couple others of mine are starting to get a bit ragged from doubling them back through the buckle. This one is superior in construction because it's stitched around the edges, and because the buckle has no exposed metal and is thus gentler on the belt when you pull it through. I also love the quilted look of it.

The khaki top is from Susina, cropped white pants from La Redoute, and sandals by Stuart Weizman.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


This dress is actually a mistake. I had ordered a completely different one from La Redoute, but they sent me this instead. Once I tried it on I really liked it, so here it is, making its debut. I gave it a more structured look by adding this blue obi belt from Sunhee Moon, and blue t-straps by Paulo.

To keep me warm in chilly meeting rooms today, I took along this cropped black cardigan from Old Navy. The cardigan by itself is pretty boring, but I like the shape of it and it's light enough to wear indoors. Awhile back I decided to give it a little edginess by sewing on a skull patch I got in Reykjavik at a store called Dead. The motto around the edge reads, "One who fears death does not enjoy life." I thought it was an interesting counterpoint to the cute floral pattern of the dress.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


This was one of those outfits that I was really happy with when I first put it together, but that I started to lose confidence in as the day wore on. I'm not sure why either, because looking at it now I think it came together pretty well. Maybe the fact that it was so comfortable led me to believe that it looked sloppier than it actually did.
This top is from the Red Dress Shoppe, an online vintage reproduction store. It has a lot of ruching detail and a cute bow at the top, but it's really made for someone bustier than I, so I often wear something over it. Not that it looks bad alone, it's just that it's designed for cleavage.

The waistcoat is from Benetton, cords by Marlow, and shoes by John Fluevog. Here's that same Betsey Johnson bracelet I always wear, but I especially liked the way it looked next to the green and teal.

Monday, June 16, 2008


Today's outfit, being lighter in color, necessitated a background that would offer a little contrast. My apartment offers few options, but I like how the martini picture complements the red and camel outfit. The red top is from Anne Taylor, cardigan from La Redoute, skirt from H&M, and boots from Bata. The bag is from Lucky Brand and the jewelry was a gift from a friend. I like the detailing on this lightweight cardigan, particularly the scalloped sleeves.

Friday, June 13, 2008


What's this, a real smile? Where'd that come from? I have a very difficult time trying to duplicate a natural smile when I'm posing for a camera. Today I was in a particularly chipper mood, so I managed to capture the real thing without too much effort. I normally have to take 20 or so shots before I find one or two that I'm really happy with.

Today though, what's not to be happy about? I checked the forecast and we can expect 10 more days of shiny, shiny sun! Joy! As an added bonus, I had plans to meet up with all my old coworkers for lunch, and I was really looking forward to seeing those guys. And then, I guess I'm just feeling pretty great about my life in general these days.

OK, enough about me, on to the outfit: navy tee by Aziza, cropped jeans from La Redoute, shoes from John Fluevog. I kept this outfit simple and unfussy today since I knew I was driving down to Redwood City, which is significantly warmer than South San Francisco. It was a comfy, relaxed, Friday kind of look.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I liked the purple, teal, and yellow outfit from Monday so much that I decided to play with that color combo again. This time the teal and yellow are fairly subtle, the teal being incorporated into the cropped vest and the yellow in the skirt pattern. I like the way the two patterns came together; I've paired this vest with other patterns before, and I think it works well because the pattern on the vest is colorful without being so bold that it overwhelms the more subtle repeat of the skirt.

The vest is by Hale Bob, top from Sisley, skirt by Max Studio. The jeweled sandals, by Azura, were recently purchased from; this is the first time I've worn them. I was wanting a pair of brown sandals with heels, but decided the bronze would fulfill the same function and be a little flashier. This purple top, with its corset-like cut and criss-cross straps, is definitely TSFW (Too Sexy For Work); wearing something over it is a must.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Shades of Blue

Today I tried mixing different shades of blue, and uniting them by adding the contrasting orange. The navy and white top is by Crystal Candy, cropped navy pants from H&M, and shoes by Camper. I just love this scarf, which I got from a local import store; the drape is just right and it sticks to itself and stays put all day. I plan on going back and getting some different colors.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


We're in for a good long stretch of fine summer weather here in San Francisco; the next 10 days are forecasted as being sunny and in the low 70's, which I'd consider to be just about perfect. I've gone bare-limbed today with this strapless top from Mica, topped with a light cardigan from Solemio. This is the second of my strapless tops, which I've discussed at some length before. I'll just state for the record that I would never wear this top without something over it, as I find it terribly unflattering.

The linen skirt, which I've had for years, is from Eddie Bauer, which I wouldn't really consider to be the height of fashion. However it's a great basic, and pairs well with lots of colors. The 2-tone pumps, which I'm completely smitten with, are from Anne Klein and are a recent purchase from

Monday, June 9, 2008


This purple tunic top is one my sister Jessie was getting rid of because she'd outgrown it. In fact I took several items of clothing off her hands during my visit over the weekend. Funny how when the donated clothing is coming from a sister that's 20 years younger than you, it's not quite the sacrifice that most people imagine when they think of hand-me-downs (would it be a hand-me-up, in this case?). The jeans are from Level 99 and the yellow t-strap pumps from Gabriella Rocha. The handbag is by Cochinelle and is one I bought during my last visit to Venice. I haven't used it in awhile, but now that I'm well over the crummy ex-boyfriend I was with when I bought it, I guess I can put it back into use again. The jewelry is from a vendor on the Charles Bridge in Prague.