Thursday, July 26, 2012

Personal Flair

I was happy to wear this dress without anything layered on top, so that all the interesting details showed. However, since a dress like this can't be belted, or layered over anything, there aren't too many options for giving it a personal flair. I threw on some fun jewelry and thought, "This is all I can do; I'm just going to have to let the dress be the star and settle for a fairly tame outfit." Then I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror with my fab new hair color. An interesting dress, pink skull jewelry and peacock blue hair; that'll do, that'll do indeed.

Dress: Escada Sport
Jewelry: Betsy Johnson
Tights: Hue
Shoes: John Fluevog
Hair: Michele at Colorbox

Monday, July 23, 2012


Many of my current wardrobe favorites are assembled in this outfit, but the highlight for me was getting to top it all off with the same bag I'd been lamenting not buying ever since I visited Paris last December. When I was in Paris again in April I scoured the shops in search of it, but all they had at the time were light-colored suede versions and I was looking for a dressier finish, not to mention I think suede bags are a waste because they don't last. I love the embossed leather because I can dress it up or down, and because it's charcoal gray rather than black, I can more easily pair it with other neutrals. Of course, the winged bejeweled skull detail is what really made me fall for it.

Tunic: Fremont
Vest: Cotelac
Pants: Rag & Bone
Boots:  Brakko
Bag: Zadig & Voltaire
Necklace: Wendy Brandes
Rings: Metal Pointu

Saturday, July 21, 2012

I'm in a Book!

You may have noticed a new item at the top of my sidebar. Yep, that's right -- the lovely and talented Sally McGraw has included me in her newly-released book! It's beautifully designed and is jam packed with useful information, presented in Sal's upbeat and body-positive way. It's available in print form from Amazon, and there's even a Kindle/iPad edition. Pick up a copy for you and all the important women in your life!

Click on the cover photo for all of the purchasing options for Already Pretty.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Packing for France -- Summer Edition

Holy moly, packing for this most recent trip to France was a challenge for me because I have so few items in my wardrobe that are suitable for the heat of a proper summer. Truth be told, I did a fair amount of shopping here in San Francisco before I left, which is good because I also didn't buy much while traveling this time. Here's a quick rundown of what I took:

Three cardigans and 5 tops. I could've gotten away with taking only 2 cardigans, but I got good use out of all the tops. The 4 jersey ones on the right were all light enough to be able to easily wash in the sink.

One pair of jeans, one pair of shorts (which I had to buy specifically for the trip, since I didn't really own any shorts), one dress, and 2 skirts. The dress (from Athleta, along with the shorts) was also purchased for the trip, and was perfect. I could've worn it every single day.

To keep things stylish even with jeans and t-shirts, I brought along 3 lightweight scarves. Truth be told, at least one of these ended up doubling as a sweat rag. Good thing I brought laundry soap along. I'm a wimpy San Franciscan; I'm not cut out for heat.

Here are the 3 pairs of shoes I brought, along with my clothes all folded and ready to pack (minus my traveling outfit, which you saw in the last post). Note how little space everything takes up; this is a huge advantage of taking multiple lightweight layers instead of any one bulkier piece.

Finally, everything all packed up. The main compartment of the backpack was completely empty for the outward bound trip, which meant I could stuff my purse inside and thus have the allotted 2 carry-on pieces. For the trip back, when I had to check the red bag anyway because it was filled with delicious herbal liqueurs from the south of France, I put the overflow into the backpack and the blue purse became my second carry-on. This is a typical packing strategy for me, as I often bring back exotic liquors which force me to check a bag on the way home.

The purse is also new, and is the ideal travel bag. The fabric is water and stain resistant, the compartments are well organized but not so numerous that I spend 15 minutes zipping and unzipping pockets to find stuff, and the bag itself weighs next to nothing. The color looks very bright here but it's really more of a rich peacock color, which goes with so much of my wardrobe. The bag is by Tumi and was on the pricey side, but well worth it, especially for someone who travels a lot.

Below are a few different outfit combinations; some were worn for my work days in Strasbourg, and the most casual ones were worn in Aix-en-Provence.

Of course, I also wore several of the top/scarf combos with the pair of jeans I brought as well. This seems like an awful lot of outfits for a 10-day trip, but in the end it was good because there were several days where the heat forced me to return to the hotel in the afternoon and take a second shower and change. Which, considering the extreme heat wave that the eastern half of the country experienced last week, sounds incredibly foolish in retrospect (the hottest it got was 92F in Aix). Like I said, I'm a wimp when it comes to weather extremes. This is why I usually vacation in the fall.

Monday, July 9, 2012

In the News

Here I am all packed up and ready to go for my recent trip to France. This was my traveling outfit and all my luggage for my 10-day trip. How I planned my wardrobe and managed my bags will be the subject of an upcoming post, but today I wanted to talk about the news.

During the last week, what is probably the biggest scientific breakthrough of our lifetime was announced and predictably, 99.9% of the world hardly took any notice. The concept of the Higgs boson has been kicking around in the physics world for 40 or 50 years now, but was finally proven this week. Now don't ask me to explain to you what it is or what exactly it means; despite what my best friend might think, I'm neither physicist, M.D., geologist, or anything other than a biologist with an emphasis in immunology. Physicists are a whole other breed of scientist and I am certainly not talented in that area, but even to a layperson like me, this is exciting stuff. For me this is huge because as a life scientist, I was used to thinking of physics and chemistry as the study of "inanimate" things, but it's hard to classify something that can impart mass to other particles as inanimate. Even if that was the only amazing thing about it, that in itself sort of rocks my world. Do yourself a favor and find out more about this nifty little particle; it has huge implications for all of our lives, which few among us can probably even begin to fathom yet.

Also in the headlines this week, an aging, egotistical and quite possibly insane actor and his too-young starlet wife have announced that they're splitting; something which also probably could've been accurately predicted 40 or 50 years ago. This will change your life precisely not at all.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

San Francisco: Bring A Sweater!

I've been doing a bit of shopping lately; it began in preparation for my trip to France, which I will actually be just returning from by the time this post goes live. At some point it got very hot in San Francisco (ok, "hot" being 85F), and I realized I was going to be traveling somewhere even hotter and didn't own even one pair of shorts that wasn't either 'working-around-the-house' or 'Burning Man.' And come to think of it, I also didn't own very many lightweight, short-sleeved tops that were suitable to wear without a cardigan or some other upper layer. After all, I live in a city where our motto could be, "San Francisco: Bring A Sweater!"

I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do with this beachy, sun-drenched t-shirt once it starts to get cold again (which is probably 2 weeks from now), but fuck it. Layering it up with a denim jacket and scarf doesn't look so bad, now does it?

Scarf: Ralph Lauren
Shirt: Chris & Carol
Jacket: Tulle (thrifted)
Pants: Michael Kors
Shoes: Steve Madden

Monday, July 2, 2012

Peep Show

It was a very warm day when I wore this, and the SF breezes did their best to create a peep show with this wrap dress, which I wore without a slip because of the heat. Luckily this oversized handbag is just the right shape to carry in such a way that it holds the dress together when I'm walking. It's important to look nonchalant even when your dress is threatening to expose your underwear.

I just love the silhouette that this dress creates. The draped neckline, the nipped in waist, and the cascade of ruffles on the skirt really accentuate my curves and even create them where they don't exist. I feel like this dress should earn a commission for all the work it does.

Dress: All Saints
Shoes: Bettye Muller
Bag: Coccinelle