WIW: my current FFBO skirt

I realized I'd worn this outfit - or close to it - two or three times in as many weeks. That's more repeating than I usually do, but it's both comfortable and flattering. It's a bit basic - I have a wrap sweater that adds a bit more dimension - but the weather's been warm again so a tee is just about right.

Uniqlo tee, Zara skirt, Tsubo boots. And new Hue tights a size bigger than the size chart suggests - infinitely better! All purchased new this season, come to think of it - that's a big shift for me.

How do you feel about the skirt length? It's on the short side. Funny - I always err in the other direction, wearing skirts that look too long on my short legs and thus frumpier than expected. I like this one, and I'm comfortable with the length for work. What do you think? (Mid-30s lab scientist; supervising a grad student but not teaching.)

(The photo angle is odd and the mirror might be one of those slender-izing ones in a fitting room so it's hard to judge.) 


WIW: plaid inspiration and a small shift in style direction

One of my favorite shows so far of fashion week was Marissa Webb's low-key collection.

Recently I've been gravitating towards black and grey tweeds, plaids, masculine tailoring, and drifting away from avant garde black (not entirely!). Even the pieces I've pinned from Kate Lanphear, the reigning queen of solid black, are her most tweedy and androgynous.

Some of this is me finally, slowly giving in to the hipster aesthetic of my town. By hipster, I mean a bit vintage, a bit heritage, and a bunch of other things I can't put my finger on. Chambray shirts, classic oxfords, etc. There's a style trend in the fashion world I think of as "french hipster" (no idea if that name makes sense to anyone) - the less boho of Isabel Marant's looks, for instance.

Anyway, Marissa Webb's very wearable collection somehow crystallized some of the images I had in my head, plus as a 90s grunge teenager I loved that side of it. And as luck would have it, that plaid shirt I posted as a K/R last week is exactly the same plaid in her collection. 

Image 1: My favorite look from her collection. Love the slouchy pants, the plaid, and the peacoat. I'm still searching for the perfect soft pants...

Images 2 & 3: My first-pass interpretation (with very wet hair and bad lighting...). Aqua plaid shirt, old BR wool sweater tied on my waist, R13 slouchy skinnies, comfy Paul Green heels.

Image 4: In which I try the fashion week streetstyle "coat as a cape on my shoulders" trend and find it good, with my standard Helmut Lang wool jacket (which adds a touch of my usual asymmetric black layers).

ps - while trying to open these photos, I accidentally printed them to my OLD job's office printer. I hope I cancelled the print jobs in time! Else, holy awkward, batman!


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


Awesome updo - thanks, Runcarla!

Runcarla posted a great inspiration photo for me this evening, an amazing french braid updo on someone whose hair has an undercut like mine (photo below).

The timing was almost spooky because today I tweeted that having the side of my head shaved finally means I can braid my hair without looking like 12-year-old Anne of Green Gables. Yesterday I was playing around with braids inspired by the Creatures of the Wind runway show:

So, I tried the braid from Runcarla's photo, and it works! I'll play with the top bits more if I do this again to get more volume. Right now my hair is desperately in need of shampoo (once a week) so it's a different texture than usual, smooth and thick and flat.

Thanks for the idea!!


Go to the full post to see all of the pictures →


Theyskens Theory

I am mourning the passing of the Theyskens Theory line. From now on, it will be folded into the main Theory line.

As background: Theory has always been a great source for stylish careerwear, but not always the most exciting. Theory asked Olivier Theyskens, a rather artsy Belgian designer, to design a capsule for spring 2011. After that, they hired him as their artistic director. His influence was definitely seen in the main Theory line but he continued making Theyskens Theory as a separate collection, showing at fashion week.

As of this year, Theory decided it made more sense to merge the two and have Olivier Theyskens' more fashion-forward designs shown at fashion week as part of the Theory line. I don't know yet how it'll translate to what's in the stores. In the past, Theyskens Theory was carried at just a few department stores, separate from Theory. Perhaps it'll mean the main Theory line expands to be less basic, continuing in the direction they've gone for the past few years - not a bad change.

Anyway, I'm sad about this for three reasons, mostly personal and emotional not practical.

First, Theyskens Theory came on the scene soon after I got interested in fashion. His designs, especially in the first few seasons, were so, so me - that was a year when styles were trending darker and a bit avant garde, so it lined up well with my aesthetic. It helped shape my style and it gave me a relatively affordable, accessible source of slightly edgy clothes. I ended up with a handful of his pieces bought on clearance, and I'd love to buy more from those first few seasons. So I have an emotional connection to it.

Second, I just looked at the Theory runway show from today at Fashion Week and it's certainly a bit more mainstream and low key than his previous shows. Still excellent, but less inspiring. My wardrobe needs don't include businesswear (suits, etc) and I'm not so sure Theory will keep making the more casual or edgy pieces from Theyskens. 

And third, a purely practical irritation: Theyskens pieces were cut to a different model than Theory. Theory runs very small and isn't exactly shaped like me, though it's quite close. Theyskens Theory always fit me perfectly. (Except that one silk tee I got stuck in, in a fitting room!)

It's probably a good business decision: Theory will shift a little more fashion-forward and keep up with the competition. I'm not sure how commercially successful the Theyskens line was. I always saw things on deep clearance at the Rack and Outnet (good for me!).

But I'm still sad!