Thursday, November 21, 2019

The Perfect Patchwork Wrap Dress for Thanksgiving

Head to Toe: Dress, Moon River //  Bag, Brahmin // Boots, Frye (similar) // Necklace, C/O Kay Jewelers

This Western patchwork wrap dress is one of my favorite pieces from this month's Nuuly order. I wore it to a blogger event, my bestie's baby shower, and a cocktail party this month. I also think it would make a perfect, easy look for Thanksgiving.

A few years ago, I would've cringed about the dress covering the top of my boots, but I've really been digging the layered, prairie look lately. These Frye riding boots were my first expensive "adult" purchase, and they are true investment pieces. They only look better with age, and they're incredibly comfortable. I stashed them on the shelf for a while while ankle boots reigned the day, but I'm glad calf-height boots are back in fashion. What was your first big fashion purchase?
 Photos by Chris Loynd

Friday, November 15, 2019

Vintage '70s Sweater for an Early Cold Snap

Head to Toe: Sweater, Vintage // Cords, Anthropologie // Booties, CAT Footwear // Headband, Amazon

I found this super warm vintage 1970s sweater at Little Ghost Vintage during our trip to Portland, Maine. I thought it might be stashed away until December, but it got super cold here this week so I busted it out early. (Sweater weather for Monti too, since he just got a shotty DIY mom haircut.) I love the simple color scheme and fair isle pattern, and it is incredibly warm. They just don't make things like they used to, amiright? Happy Friday, folks!
Photos by Chris Loynd

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

The Perfect November Look

Head to Toe: Sweater, The Good Jane //  Skirt, Maeve by Anthropologie // Bag, Brahmin

November isn't my favorite month of the year, but there's something charming about it. It's a good time to homestead, hunker in and rest before holiday craziness. I think this outfit pretty much sums it up—Little Women vibes met with just enough sparkle, with leaves crunching under your boots.

I know the holidays have a shorter timeframe this year with Thanksgiving falling late, but it just feels to me that everyone is jumping the gun. Maybe they do this every year, and I'm just being a Grinch, but I'm so not ready to deck the halls. I'll be humbly protesting over here ordering pumpkin spice lattes and enjoying my fall decor for the next few weeks. How about you?
Photos by Chris Loynd

Thursday, October 31, 2019

Happy Halloween in Lee Overalls and Foc Martens

Head to Toe: Top, Marshall's // Overalls, Lee // Jacket, Free People // Shoes, thrifted

Happy Halloween! It looks like it's going to be a wet night in New England for trick-or-treaters, so I'll be happy to hunker in and watch scary movies with the hubby. (Halloween, to be exact, with scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis.)

Thankfully, I got some great leaf-peeping shots before the rain came this week, and Monti even posed in his Halloween costume. The overalls and leather jacket were from this month's Nuuly subscription, as was the chunky turtleneck sweater in my Jack-O-Lantern Blaze pictures, below. My picks this month definitely had a tomboy slant, so I'm looking forward to ordering some more feminine pieces for November. But that's the fun of being able to swap up your look, right?

Last weekend, Sean and I hosted our annual Halloween party and it was an absolute blast. Sean and I were Velma and Shaggy from Scooby Doo, and our guests brought their a-game as well. Our costumes were sourced from Goodwill, including these faux Aldo Doc Martens I found for a few bucks. They were great for Velma and for everyday wear, as you can see with this look.

We served a delicious caramel apple sangria and laughed into the wee hours of the morning. Check out highlights from our spooky celebrations, below. I'm a little sad this free-wheeling season is coming to an end, but I'm sure November will bring good things. How are you celebrating Halloween? 
Photos by Chris Loynd

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Haunted Happenings, Wedgie Jeans & the Best Fall Sweater

Head to Toe: Top, Urban Outfitters // Sweater, Lost + Wander //  Jeans, Levi's // Flats, French Sole
About 15 years ago, you'd never see me going near this house's steps in Stratford near where I grew up. At the time, I was convinced it was the haunted Phelps Mansion — where in the 1800s a local reverend held a sรฉance to bring back Goodie Bassett, a woman hung as a witch in Stratford decades before the Salem Witch Trials. As a teenager, my friends and I would walk around the area after dark and freak ourselves out telling ghost stories.

As it turns out, this is just a nearby historic house. The actual Phelps Mansion was located about a block over, where it was later turned into a nursing home. A lot of scary things happened there, and Ed and Lorraine Warren were called in to investigate. The building was later demolished in the 1970s.

This home may not be haunted, but somehow an 1800s Greek Revival home in Connecticut still feels spooky, so I thought it would be the perfect spot for some October blog photos. I'm wearing the iconic "Wedgie" Levi's and the perfect duster sweater from this month's Nuuly order. I'm not sure if I'm on the Wedgie bandwagon just yet, but if you give them a try, size up or suffer an actual wedgie. What spooky things are you doing this Halloweekend?
Photos by Chris Loynd

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

The High-Fashion Headband Dupe for $8 on Amazon

Head to Toe: Sweater, jeans and slides, thrifted // Wallet, Ora Delphine // Headband, Amazon

I have been obsessed with this braided headband ever since I saw it on one of my favorite bloggers, Noelle Downing (below). A Blair Waldorf fan for life, I'm stoked to see the velvet headband trend making a comeback. I saw a bunch of headband fashion roundups online, but all the pieces were $50 and up. Not I'm not shirking the handmade quality that probably went into those, but I'm just not going to spend that much money on a trendy accessory that will be over next season. So, I found this one on Amazon for $8, and bought another green padded velvet headband for the same price.

But unlike headbands, I think a good leather wallet is worth investing in. Better yet, win one. Head over to my Instagram to enter to win this Ora Delphine genuine leather wallet. The burgundy hue is perfect for fall your autumnal looks. See what I did there? Good luck!

Photos by Chris Loynd

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Nuuly vs. Rent The Runway Unlimited, According to a Blogger Who Has Used Both

Head to Toe: Blouse, Anthropologie (thrifted) // Skirt, Anthropologie via Nuuly // Mules, thrifted // Jacket, Levi's via Nuuly // Bag, Brahmin // Hat, thrifted

This summer, a new rental subscription model called Nuuly hit the market. For $88 per month, users can borrow six items from an array of Anthropologie brands and vintage treasures. Of course, I had to be one of the first on board to try it out.

I love that subscription models let you try an array of trends and styles from brands that might otherwise be out of reach. It also feels good to shop in a more eco-conscious way than fast-fashion. In the past, I have subscribed to Rent the Runway Unlimited, so I wanted to share my thoughts on both models if you're ever interested in trying one out. Here we go!

What you get for $88 per month with Nuuly

Nuuly offers all of the brands under the Anthropologie umbrella. This includes Anthropologie, Levi's, Urban Outfitters, Free People, Citizens of Humanity, Paige and J.O.A, among others. Nuuly also has a ton of cool vintage options like college T-shirts, silk kimonos and leather jackets. With the subscription, you choose six items to wear each month. Wear them like you own them and then mail them back before ordering your next batch. Shipping, laundering and insurance is all included. 

What you get for $159 per month with Rent the Runway Unlimited

Rent the Runway offers clothing and accessory rentals from a ton of leading designers. Think Opening Ceremony, Parker, Helmut Lang, Kate Spade, Derek Lam, DVF...the list goes on. You can always order a one-off rental, which will vary in price by the value of the item. Rentals start around $40 and go up from there. With the unlimited subscription, you can borrow four items at a time. Send one piece (or all four things) back and order more. There is no limit to the amount of rentals you can have in any given month.

When I had Rent the Runway Unlimited, I lived in the city and was able to drop items off and shop at the store directly, which eliminated any shipping wait time. I was very active and typically able to rent about 12 things in a month. As with Nuuly, shipping, insurance and dry cleaning is all included.

Nuuly vs. Rent the Runway

If you want to try a clothing rental subscription, deciding between these two depends on your lifestyle. Rent the Runway is more expensive, but you get more clothing per month and higher-end designers. For me, this made sense when I was working as an editor in Manhattan. I was constantly going to industry events and wanted to be dressed accordingly.

While I've never been one to care too much about designers, it did give me more confidence to be at fancy events in quality pieces. I was also at a time in my life where I had a ton of showers and wedding things to attend, so that helped me justify the price. ($159 would buy just one dress at J. Crew, for example.) I also had a lot of fun trying crazy trends. If I didn't love something, it was okay, since I'd just send it back. 

With Nuuly, I'm much more thoughtful about the items I choose each month. I try to create a capsule wardrobe of pieces that can be mixed and matched together instead of shopping every trend. Nuuly carries brands I love but wouldn't be able to afford otherwise, as well as cool vintage offerings. It's also about half the cost of RTR Unlimited, so it's more attainable financially. And since I work from home, six items per month is more than enough. Both models offer a mix of casual and formal options, but I would say Rent the Runway skews more dressy overall.

Pros to RTR Unlimited

  • Unlimited! A virtual closet of all the clothes you could ever want
  • Carries accessories
  • High-end designers

Cons to RTR Unlimited

  • Expensive
  • No vintage
  • Constant pressure to get the most out of your subscription

Pros to Nuuly

  • Lots of vintage and contemporary offerings
  • Quality brands 
  • Create a capsule wardrobe each month

Cons to Nuuly

  • No accessories
  • Limited rentals per month, so if something doesn't fit, you're SOL
  • Not many black tie options

Final thoughts

I would honestly recommend either of these options for women looking to mix up their wardrobe. For me, Rent the Runway became too expensive and unnecessary for my lifestyle. Still, it would be great for anyone who works in an office and needs formal clothing for work and personal events. 

Right now, I'm really loving Nuuly. It allows me to try new pieces each month, and everything is high quality and fashion-forward. I also love that they have vintage items that I wouldn't be able to find elsewhere. I've always said I would buy all of my clothes at Anthropologie if I could afford it, and now I can! 

I make this work in my budget by cutting out all other shopping. Think about how easy it is to drop $100 at Marshall's. Instead, I get access to better-quality items, and I don't have the guilt about donating trendy pieces after one season. It's a luxury, for sure, but has been worth it for my lifestyle. It's also fun to look at the month ahead and plan some unique, season-appropriate looks. I think I'll now remember my months in Nuuly clothes. September will be tough to beat! Let me know your thoughts in the comments—would you ever try a clothing subscription? 
 Photos by Amish0graphy

Monday, September 23, 2019

School Days: Cowboy Boots and a Vintage Sweatshirt

Head to Toe: Sweatshirt, vintage (via Nuuly) // Jeans, Paige (via Nuuly) // Boots, Durango // Bag, Cole Haan

Happy first day of fall, y'all! Last week, I had the opportunity to shoot with an amazing local photographer, Amish Shah. We chose downtown New Haven for our location, so I wanted to create a school-days vibe in the heart of the Yale campus. (I went to college just a few minutes away at Southern Connecticut.) Even though I’ve been out of school for nearly a decade, fall always feels like my new year. It offers a fresh start—a last chance to check off your bucket list before the snow falls. I have quite a few things on my fall to-do list. Some things are expected: watch scary movies, go apple picking. Some are personal goals, like to start my online vintage boutique. What’s on your Autumn bucket list?
 Photos by Amish0graphy