jacket: free people
necklace: gift (similar)
dress: hand-me-down (handmade by a friend)
shoes: shoemint (old)
glasses: zenni optical
youre familiar with the term "high-low" dressing, right? its that thing where you pair really expensive things with really cheap things to make a unique outfit, like, an h&m top tucked into a chanel skirt or whatever. its like, a really popular thing to do. it can be fun, but with my wardrobe being in the sad, sorry state of needing new everything in recent years, my closet really didnt have much "high" to it. it was more like "low, lower, and lowest".
but things have changed. ive gotten older and wiser and a prolonged lack of shopping money forced me to really examine my feelings about clothes. and through all of this, i learned a few things:
1. my style really doesnt change much over time. lots of my old favorites, are still my favorites. and most of the more recent purchases i bought during my new mom identity crisis, i really really hate.
2. i prefer a more minimal wardrobe. generally speaking, i dont typically wear that many different kind of outfits, and id rather only have things that mix and match with each other. both to save time getting ready in the morning and also to maximize my options for looking put together without always wearing the same thing.
3. im the quality-over-quantity type. dont get me wrong, i do LOVE a bargain. but at the same time, theres a HUGE difference between something thats a great value, and something thats just cheap. and i dont know if its because of what ive learned through sewing, or if im just a snob, but i can definitely tell the difference. and maybe its just me, but id rather have one high quality shirt that will last for years than three cheap, disposable shirts.
4. im just not that into shopping. despite the fact that i really love clothes and the visual stimulation and inspiration that comes from shopping (or sewing, or reading blogs, or people watching, or really anything for that matter), going to the mall (or thrift store, or target) to go buy clothes tends to do one of two things: either i get super stressed out and overwhelmed and cant make up my mind, or i end up impulsively buying things that really arent me because im out shopping and feel like i need to buy something.
so even though now, thanks to jamberry and james working full-time again, i have disposable income for the first time in my entire adult life and i totally could go clothes shopping, just for fun. i havent.
ive actually been working really hard to clean out my closet, this battle has been going on for several months and my "to get rid of" pile now reaches the ceiling. and since i (obviously, given the pile-to-the-ceiling) had WAY too many clothes to begin with, i really dont need anything. and the rare times i do shop, im looking for specific, high-quality pieces that can replace several of my old, worn out, or ill-fitting things. i usually know exactly what it is im looking for, and am just trying to find the right piece at the right price, rather than browsing to see what strikes my fancy. its not the most exciting place to be in wardrobe-wise, but its fun.
and sometimes outfits like this one happen and its really really funny. see, every single piece of this outfit was free, except for the jacket. the dress was an old, old hand-me-down from my sister (handmade by one of our friends), the shoes i won in a blog giveaway, the pearls were a wedding present.
but then theres the jacket. james took me out shopping for my birthday and we went to free people and he pointed out this jacket and i just HAD to have it: it was totally me, fit like a dream, was the right balance of warm-but-not-too-restrictive, and owning it would mean getting rid of like six old jackets and hoodies that i wasnt a huge fan of. but it was expensive. like, i want to barf expensive. but james insisted because it was my birthday and it was his treat.
put the two parts together, and boom. high-low dressing. i guess this is a thing i do now.