Monday, January 31, 2011

30x30 Intro, Winter 2011

When I signed up for the 30x30 challenge, I did so sort of reluctantly. It seemed like a lot of work. And I'm lazy. And I won't lie. So far, I've put about 4 hours of good solid work into it. Pulling clothes, choosing how to mix and match them, hanging them up, photographing them, working on my spreadsheet working on this post keeping it real and thanking my tremendously awesometacular husband for basically just being alive. He's just so freakin' rad and also my reason for drawing breath every day. Srsly you guys. He rules. The most. (He may or may not have written some of that while I was putting some blankets in the dryer. But in all seriousness, Nathan participated in 100% of my prep work. It was really fun to be able to work on that with a friend, so if you have a friend you think might enjoy helping you, I encourage you to ask them for help.)

I started the process by purchasing Kendi's guide and reading it cover to cover. If you feel anxious at all about taking the challenge next go round, start there. It gave me the confidence to get started, and it was only 4 bucks.

After that, we pulled out a spare clothing rack we had stowed away. I went into the closet and started pulling things. I pulled things I know worked together and then pulled things that fell into similar color categories. My mix was pretty pattern heavy, which surprised me, but made me that much more interested in wearing those clothes for 30 days.

patterns close up

After I had pulled about 27 items I stopped. I wanted to be able to fill in any holes I found with those last three items. (Like the blazer I later found out I will need for the next EBEW!) Nathan booted up the computer and I called out item descriptions and he logged them in the spreadsheet. We had categories for each clothing type. They were numbered in the order they were in at the time and we did not worry about renumbering.

spreadsheet crop
(if you need to see that bigger, click on the image to go to my flickr page, where you can see it in larger sizes)

Once everything had a number, I started calling out combinations I would wear. Not that I WILL wear mind you, just possibilities. We stopped at 37 combinations. That leaves room for a couple that just don't look right once I get them on, AND once I added my last 3 items, I have even more possibilities. Charting out that many possibilities made me feel much more confident about the challenge. The last column on the spreadsheet was left blank. That is where I will log outfits as I actually wear them so as not to repeat any.

And with all that background stuff out of the way, I give you my items

rack side view

Individual items, by number, not category (for info regarding how may items I selected per category, please see the spreadsheet...)

As before, if you'd like to see any of these bigger, please feel free to click on through to my flickr...

1 Rainbow sweater2 AA Salt and Pepper Hoodie3 AA Charcol Cardigan

4 Army Green Shawl Collar Fleece5 tie dyed jeans6 black slim pants

7 denim skirt8 green lace skirt

9 black lace skirt10 grey lace dress11 large print floral dress

12 Small print floral dress13 Tucker for Target dress14 reversable birthday dress

15 Striped long sleeve top16 black vneck tee17 Banana Republic sheer tank

18 UO grey, blue, black and purple sheer tank19 UO horse tank20 high heeled docs

21 flat doc martens22 sperry boots

23 Eggshell Fleece24 cammo boots

25 Nude net ruffle dress26 Grey hoodie sweater27 Free People Sweater Coat

28 Black Oversized cozy sweater29 Fitted Blue Blazer30 Grey watercolor NR dress

And that's it. I'm ready to get started!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Chains of Love

The other day I wore a super cool shoulder harness I bought recently from SNEFTER over at Etsy. I let the artist know that a couple of you expressed interest in getting a similar harness of your own, the artist offered to give my readers a 10% discount for the month of February! Just enter the code WWWYG at checkout.

These are just a few of the super cool harness in the shop (there are also knuckle and cage rings and hand cage bracelets...)

Silver and gunmeteal shoulder harness
Silver and gunmeteal shoulder harness

Antique Brass Gold Body Shoulder Harness
Antique Brass Gold Body Shoulder Harness

Silver Ladder Body Chain Harness
Silver Ladder Body Chain Harness

Antique Brass Gold Chain Shoulder Armor Bib Harness
Antique Brass Gold Chain Shoulder Armor Bib Harness

The customer service was above and beyond and service was super fast.

Friday, January 28, 2011

But I Still Love Technology, Just Not As Much As You, You See

FBFF 1.28.11

It’s Friend Friday

1. What technology do you use in blogging? (computer, camera, video camera, tripod, etc...)

Pretty basic really! I recently upgraded to my very own laptop, a Toshiba Satellite, and I LOVE IT. I use a cheap tripod from Target, it was like $20 bucks, in combination with a Gorilla Pod. I use the Gorilla Pod to attach the camera to the tripod, which may seem a little weird. But the little adapter thing that you put on your camera? You can only have one on there at any given time, and it strips the inside to replace it over and over (at least if you are me). If I use the Gorilla Pod one, then I can use both tripods. So it just works for me. I use a Canon PowerShot SX130IS 12.1 MP Digital Camera with 12x Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilized Zoom with 3.0-Inch LCD (Can you tell I copied that description from Amazon?). I choose it because it’s sort of a halfway point between fancy pants DLSR and a point and shoot. Plus it has a setting that allows me to take 10 shots each time I use the self timer. so I get 30 shots in about the time it would take me to get, say 13 on another camera. I also like that it takes regular AA batteries. That means I bought a charger and 4 pack of rechargeable, which I use most of the time, but just in case I ever run the batteries all down with no time to recharge, I’ve got a super easy fix. With the Rebel it was two batteries and once they were done, so was I

2. What computer and online technology do you use? (blogging system,photo storage, photo editing tools, etc..)

I’m a straight up Blogger girl. I have considered (am considering, I guess) my own domain, but haven’t taken the leap just yet! I tend to write my posts in either a Google Doc or a Word Doc before I post them to catch spelling errors (works most of the time. But not all!). I use flickr for photo storage because I have been using it for YEARS, way before I started blogging and I am so used to it. Plus I feel like it allows me much more control over picture sizes. For photo editing I go back and forth between Picsa and Microsoft Photo Editor. I prefer the Microsoft Photo editor. The devil you know!

3. What is your process for taking pictures?

I use a tripod (well, technically the two tripods!). When Nathan was unemployed he took my pictures with our Rebel, and I loved that. It was fast and easy and he was good at it. But I’m back to the tripod now! If for some CRAZY reason I am up early enough, I take pics in my backyard before work. If not I take them on a 15 minute break. I basically run down to my car and grab the tripod, find somewhere really close by, snap a few pics (I tend to do 3-4 rounds of 10 shots ) and then run back in. I edit on my lunch break or at home. I basically catch as catch can, you know? I do what I have time for when I have time for it.

4. When it comes to backdrops for your photos what do you consider? Do you scout locations or shoot the same spot daily?

I am more concerned with lighting. I’d like to get my time management skills to a place where I have time during daylight hours to scout and shoot in cool places, cause I do think those are more fun, but I’m not there yet, and that’s OK.

5. If you could splurge and get one new piece of equipment what would you be buying?

Lights! So I could get good, quality, indoor photos. I’ve never managed that...yet. <3

Thursday, January 27, 2011

TL:DR Involving lots of CAPSLOCK

Nov 28, Day 53
(You know how I hate a post without a pic so sometimes I just post a random one? This is one of those times. Please enjoy the dog.)

Recently, I decided to Get Involved. Getting involved is not in my nature. I am not participatory. I fear, above all things (except maybe needles), rejection and failure. If I don’t try, I can’t fail, right? (Wrong!) WHAT IF? What if I put myself out there and no one responds? What if no one likes me? What if the other girls never ask me to swap? Or do a guest post? What if she never comments on my blog? What if I am making a huge fool out of myself and they are having Twitter Parties where they just make fun of how desperate I seem (ahahaha, OK, I never really thought that one. I’m not quite that vain. But it’s funny, so I’m leaving it.)

I also struggle LIKE WHOA with jealousy. WHY? Why does she have more followers than me? Why does she get so many more comments than me? Why is she so popular, how can I be more like her?


It’s not pretty and it’s not helpful and it’s…SILLY. I love these girls, I’m PROUD of these girls, these girls deserve their success and I am happy to contribute to that success in any way I can. These are wonderful people.

Seriously, Self, I said, GET OVER IT*. I’m good enough, I’m smart enough and regardless of whether or not other people like me (and they do, they REALLY, REALLY DO!) I’m worthy of being liked, LOVED, by me. It’s OK for me to be happy with where and what I am. In my blog and in my life.

Plus, I’m doing this whole blog thing to have a good time. If I hold back, it will never be the blessing to me (and to others) that it has the capacity to be. I’m only cheating myself.

So I put on my Big Girl Panties and I put myself out there.

I got to Twittering.

I got to commenting. Even if the post had 14 bajillion comments already and I had nothing new to add. If I wanted to comment, I commented.

I joined FBFF

I stepped up to the plate and signed on for challenges (30X30) and community projects (EBEW).

I started emailing people and speaking up when I had something to say.

I signed up for a conference (TxSCC) and made a new friend to travel with (Hi Elissa, Love you!)

And guess what? Not only have I made TONS of wonderful new friends, but I’ve also been happier. SO MUCH HAPPIER. And able to experience JOY for my friends at their triumphs and successes. I feel light, and happy and free, but most of all, I’ve experienced the warmth and comfort one only finds in COMMUNITY. Because that’s what this is. A community. And a great one. Full of wonderful people.

So if you haven't yet, get involved. Don’t let fear or uncertainty stop you.

*I love you, Mama <3

Strike A Pose, There's Nothing To It (For the Love of Wendy B)

Today is for doing your best Wendy B pose. Pop on over and take a look! (I think Jentine nailed it, personally!)

My best Wendy B

I went with the double hand on hips and added leopard print for a little edge. And to compensate for my complete lack of red lips or ability to do an open mouth smile unprompted. (You have to make me laugh, or it looks...unnatural...)

(I'm interested in feedback on how you would style this shoulder harness! Please let me know!)

Shoulder harness, snefter at Etsy
Tees, Target (men's)
Skirt, Forever XXI
Tights, We Love Colors
Boots, Doc Martens

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Everybody Everywear, Breton(?) Stripes(!)

ETA: OK! Totally going to add it, but it won't be until tonight, for some reason EBEW is blocked at work. <3

I don't know. I googled, we chatted over Twitter...and I still don't know if this counts as a "Breton Stripe". Seriously. Google was zero help. Google images was even less help. Some said it needed to be navy and white. Others said it could be any color combo, but must be evenly spaced. Some said it must be a shirt to be Breton Stripes and others still said it must be a boatneck shirt. Well. This garment is none of those things. It's a skirt, it's black and white and the stripes are not evenly spaced. It is obviously not boatneck, since it has no neck. But I am with you in spirit. Should I upload this to the Everybody, Everywear page? Or did I miss the mark so much I ought to pass and give the next one a go? What say you, dear readers?

Regardless, it was a marvelous outfit.


Both comfortable and flattering.


I finally bit the proverbial bullet and shelled out the "big bucks" for some quality tights from We Love Colors, and I can absolutely tell the difference. They are warmer, thicker and more opaque than any of my other tights.


And this is another little body con skirt. I can't believe I avoided them for so long. I thought they would be unflattering on me. And I could not have been more wrong. This one actually looks nice enough with good tights under it I could have tucked the shirt in and felt totally fine about the ol' pooch. And my butt? Looks AMAZING. For reals.


I leave you with this outtake, which I have titled "Drunkface McGee", for totally obvious reasons...

1.24.11 (out take: DRUNKFACE McGEE)

Hoodie, American Apparel, customized by me
Tee, Target (men’s section)
Skirt, Forever XXI
Tights, We Love Colors
Boots, Doc Martens

Monday, January 24, 2011

So Shimmy Once And Do It Again

Last night I had dinner with Elissa from Dress With Courage. We decided that it would be a good idea to meet, since we have already booked a room together and decided to drive to Austin together for the Texas Style Counsel Conference (see sidebar! Are you signed up yet? It’s going to be a wonderful experience for the community!). I’m super excited about the event and after having (a very long) dinner with Elissa I am stoked about spending more time with her as well. I felt right at home with her and I hope she felt the same.


I’m starting to look at things in terms of “should I wear this now or will I need it for the 30X30?” I plan to drag out the extra clothes rack tonight (I think separating out the pieces is going to be key for me) and get to work with my selection, so after that the rest of the week ought to be pretty easy. Anything NOT on the 30X30 rack!


I’m really nervous about the 30X30. I know I can’t be the only one to feel this way, but I can’t envision how my personal wardrobe is going to work. It’s all dresses and no pants. I plan to sub skirts for pants. I can’t wait to get to work on it tonight. I know that once I’ve got my selections sorted I’ll be much more comfortable. I plan to try and squeeze out 30 outfits before I even start and document them. I don’t HAVE to wear those 30 combination,. But knowing I’ve already sorted them out will make the actual challenge that much more fun for me.


So hey! I haven’t even mentioned the outfit yet! It was just a casual outfit. Worn to do a little shopping in the afternoon and then dinner out with Elissa. I got a couple of those body con skirts from Forever XXI recently and WHY did no one tell me how COMFORTABLE they are? I mean, I never considered them before, because I have such a pronounced tummy, but with an oversized top, no one can even tell. It’s like wearing pajamas for crying out loud.

Hoodie, American Apparel, altered by me
Tee, Hot Topic (lololololol)
Skirt, Forever XXI
Tights, Target
Boots, Doc Martens

Friday, January 21, 2011

I Get This Feeling I'm In Motion

This is from Tuesday. Thank you so much for all your kind words. I got dressed and Nathan drove me to work today and I plan to try and hang for at least half a day. Not sure I'll make it much longer than that without my meds (can't take them and drive myself home and my car is still here from Wednesday!) but I'm giving it my best shot!

This is probably the most amazing outfit I will ever wear. It was perfect in every way.

To be honest, I was not originally pleased with the pictures, but then Alannah and Suze gave me just the boost I needed to see how well they actually came out.


Sunday I had an AMAZING day with my friend Taryn, who I had not seen in at least a year. We went to see “Country Strong”, shopping and then to dinner at Cheesecake Factory. While we were at Nordstrom Rack, Taryn found this amazing cape. I have been trying on capes ALL WINTER and none of them have looked right on me until this one. Just LOOK at those ridiculous shoulders, they are amazing.


It’s more of a Fall/Spring weight cape, but we were blessed with an unseasonably warm day on Tuesday so I sprang at the chance to wear it just once this season (oh, you know I’m trying to find ways to make it work before Spring, I will.)


The other thing I really loved are these Aldo cammo boots with the floral dress. I actually considered these earlier this year at full price, but just couldn’t justify it. But they went on sale for less that $40 and I didn’t even hesitate. I knew JUST how I wanted to wear them, too. They were just begging to be worn with floral dresses and I am happy to oblige.


Did you notice my hair is down? I really am trying to listen to suggestions (yours, my husbands, my co-workers...) and learn to wear it down. Having seen both a side and middle part now, which do you prefer? I think the middle is easier to wear and stays off my face better but perhaps the side is more flattering and I could train it to lay that way?

Cape, BCBG via Nordstrom Rack
Dress, Tucker for Target
Tights (ugh worst tights ever. I don’t know.)
Boots, Aldo
Gloves, Target