Third Thursday Threads: Bare Legs

Thank goodness it has been nice enough in Seattle to wear things that don't require tights or long pants! We've had some weird weather here this week - really foggy and chilly in the mornings and then by the time I leave work I'm peeling off the layers because it has reached the mid-70s. But trust me, I'm not complaining - it actually helps me be productive at work when it isn't TOO nice during the day.

Anyway, as you know, I travel a lot for work. And a lot of those trips are just for the day - a quick flight to Portland, a few meetings, and a quick flight back home. I'm pretty good at knowing what to wear in cold weather for days like this - boots, tights, a comfortable dress, a cardigan/blazer, scarf, and a raincoat. Lots of layering options to stay warm or cool off and I'm perfectly comfortable no matter how much walking I do.

I've been trying to brainstorm outfits for similar days in hot weather - especially since all of my work destinations (except for Anchorage) are warmer than Seattle in the summer. When Asos reached out to me about dressing for the job I want, I knew I would pick an item that would help me in warmer weather - a pleated skirt! I've paired it here with a two-layer top (bottom layer tucked in, front tucked to show I have a waist), flats, and a statement necklace, but I could just as easily wear this skirt in the winter with a sweater and booties. It feels pretty versatile so far!

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Skirt: c/o Asos  |  Tank: Nordstrom  |  Flats: Nordstrom (similar)  
Necklace:   |  Watch: Shinola

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Also, check out how big the chickens have gotten! Charlie (pictured here) has been held the most because of her silly feathered legs, so she's the easiest to catch for a quick photo op. Doesn't mean she's happy about it though...

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Alright, now it is time for you guys to link up! Please link to a new(ish) post, link back to Work Clothes, I Suppose on your post, and make sure that your post is an outfit that contains (or talks about) bare legs! I will remove posts that don't follow this month's theme. The link up will be live until the end of the month, so if you haven't had nice enough weather yet, don't fret! You can still link up next week :) 

Slouchy (Fail)

I've been LOVING skinnier-leg slacks with slouchy tops lately. I've been finding tons of ways to make them feel business professional, especially through layering a blazer on top or collared shirt on bottom. This outfit, however, is a slouch fail, because the pants are looking WAY too big on me lately (thank you 4hb!). 

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I'm a pretty firm believer in balance in outfits like this - if my pants are slouchy, my top should be more structured + fitted. If my pants are more structured + fitted, my top can be slouchier. I'll always have my curves to contend with, stopping me from the all-over slouch - while cute on my adorable sister, it looks frumpy and adds a few pounds in appearance on me.  And honestly, I'm okay dressing around that. Sometimes I just don't pay attention, and I wear an outfit like this one all day. And honestly, I'm okay with that too. I'm not perfect. 

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Sweater: LOFT  |  Tank: Nordstrom Rack (old, similar)  |  Pants: Vince Camuto
Shoes: Anne Klein (similar) |  Necklace: Le Tote

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I've picked out my outfit for Thursday's post and I'm pretty excited about it. Can't wait to show you my take on bare legs for spring - especially since it includes an item I haven't worn before on the blog (or in real life, for that matter!). Don't forget to get your outfits ready for the Third Thursday Threads: Bare Legs link-up on Thursday!

Posted on May 19, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.

The Most Amazing Weekend

I didn't put up a Trav and Bri, Recently post yesterday because I was off adventuring through Chicago with my sister. Check out our insta hashtag (#alynbricityspree) for lots of photos of the trip. I'll have a debrief of our adventures here later this week. 

Also, don't forget this Thursday is Third Thursday Threads: Bare Legs. Can't wait to see what you all come up with!

This outfit was from a few weeks ago - actually in April during the Top 10 Remix I so terribly failed at and before the hole appeared in this cardigan. Feels like forever ago.

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Pants: LOFT  |  Tee: LOFT (similar)  |  Cardigan: BP (similar)  |  Flats: Sam Edelman (similar)

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Posted on May 18, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.

Sunrise to Sunset

Funny thing about this shirt is that I feel like it is actually the perfect piece to go from sunrise to sunset. I love how a simple, gray, graphic tee can be dressed down or dressed up so easily. I wore it all day with these white skinny jeans and an oversized cardigan to work from home, and then swapped out the chunky cardigan for an unbuttoned chambray and sparkly necklace. Toss on some lipstick and I was ready to go - to Whole Foods. 

Yes, I put on lipstick to go to Whole Foods. But not to grocery shop - to go to the #madeformom floral arranging event I attended a couple of weeks ago. 

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Tee: Banana Republic (similar)  |  Jeans: LOFT  |  Booties: Nordstrom (similar)
Chambray: Halogen  |  Necklace: BP (similar)

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I've been trying to find a good way to quickly document some of my outfits when I'm on the road - something better than a mirror selfie in a poorly lit hotel room. Hence the photo below - practice is still not making perfect, but we'll get there eventually! Any tips for photos like this? I'd love to hear them in the comments!

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Posted on May 14, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.

A Kind-of Handmade Mother's Day

My parents kind of have everything, which makes gift-giving really hard. I really love spending time with them, though, so most often my gift of choice for them is a dinner or experience together. But this year, my mom wasn't going to be in town on or around Mother's Day, so I wanted to give her something that would be beneficial for her trip. She doesn't love to wear scarves because of the warmth, but I knew that a lightweight scarf is my number one travel essential, even in hot climates, and I wanted her to have the same experience. 

The first step was finding the right scarf. I didn't know what she had planned to pack, so I wanted something that could work with any of the main neutral colors - black, brown, gray, and navy. This scarf ended up being perfect for that. 

Then I had Travis help me take photos of me wearing the scarf in a bunch of different ways. See some of them below:

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I got the photos printed out and then wrote the how-to on the back of each photo. In some cases there were 3-4 photos showing the various steps, so I carefully numbered and ordered them to highlight each step. Then, I punched a hole in the corners of all of them and tied them with a ribbon, making a little travel guide along with the scarf itself. I gave it all to her before she left on her trip, and I think she really liked it!

Best part? She's sent me a few photos already of how she's worn it - some of my ideas have been used, and she's also done some of her own, like the one below!

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Posted on May 13, 2015 .

Wedding Season (and a TTT theme announcement)

This year, Travis and I have been invited to four weddings. Unfortunately, we can only attend two of them, but along with the weddings come some bridal showers, some bachelorette/bachelor parties, and other wedding-related festivities. It's going to be a busy summer, but one we are really excited for! I've been tempted numerous times to buy a new dress for one or both of the weddings we're attending, but I'm so far staying strong in resisting. I have so many dresses that have only been worn once or twice, so I'm going to try to find a way to wear those, and wear them differently than before. 

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Same thing applies to bridal showers, where I wore this outfit. I wanted to take advantage of a sunny, but cool day, to wear this shirtdress with bare legs for the first time. I loved the pairing with the oversized sleeveless cardigan (sweater vest just doesn't sound right) to stay warm. I've noticed lately that putting a bit of effort into my hair/makeup really changes the way I feel about how I present myself, including the outfit itself. Frankly, if I curl my hair, anything I wear feels like the right outfit.

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Dress: LOFT (short-sleeve version)  |  Cardigan: old, similar  |  Booties: BP
Watch: Shinola  |  Necklace: Le Tote

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This month's theme for Third Thursday Threads challenges you to bare your legs. No more tights, or long pants - I'm thinking outfits that are showing the signs of warmer weather, like skirts and dresses, or shorts, or even a favorite swimwear/beach look for summer. I'm thinking of taking some of the new dresses I got this winter - and have only worn with tights+boots - and figuring out how to wear them now that opaque black tights look ridiculous. I'm hoping to get some inspiration from the rest of you, as well! The link up will go live next Thursday, May 21, at 7am PT. 

Trav and Bri, Recently: Vol11

Recently at home
I was in town all week - no work travel - which meant that I actually had time to tackle a few nagging projects around the house. Travis took a full load to Goodwill, we have a load ready to go to the dump, and we have a deck that is ready for summer bbqs!

A few of you have asked questions about the house addition I mentioned briefly last week. We're really excited to add a key component to the house that we've always wanted: a master bedroom. We'll gain some square footage, and a view of nearby Greenlake, plus we'll have more room for our someday-family. The project will (fingers crossed) kick off on Wednesday when the architect comes over to spend a few hours taking measurements, and then we'll work on the design, planning, bidding, and permitting stage from then until February-ish of next year, when we hope to start the actual construction. Next summer will be a mess (lots of extra time at my parent's lake place, hopefully?) and then (fingers extra-crossed) the upstairs will be complete by the time fall wraps up in 2016. Wish us luck. 

Recently purchased
A new spiralizer for veggies! I wanted something with a few more options for sizes and I'm so glad I got this one. So far I've used the skinny noodle blade for zucchini/squash noodles (Trav loved them) and I think I'll be making some sweet potato curly fries using the larger one tomorrow. 

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I'm a terrible person to share recipes on a blog because I don't use them when I cook. Here's roughly what's in here: 1/2 can organic tomato sauce; 3-4 tomatoes, chopped; 15 kalamata olives, halved; 2 garlic cloves, minced; few pinches dried oregano & basil; few shakes crushed red peppers; small scoop capers; some salt & pepper. Just let it all simmer together, tasting it a few times, for about 5 minutes, and then tossed with the zoodles. It was delicious. This recipe is fairly close to what I did. 

Recently styled
Been working on making my wardrobe more professional now that it's getting warmer out. Dreaming of a floral pencil skirt like the one Fran wore here. And really I just need this whole outfit. And thanks to advice from some of you, I've ordered a sleeveless Portofino shirt from Express to try. I'll let you know what I think once it comes. 

Also, inspiration for adorable side-swept bangs that are just barely too long to wear straight has been found. Thank goodness for Adina's blog

Recently consumed
A super-happy cheat-day worth of fruit and cheese and carbs and maybe a donut. Just maybe. I'm getting more active on snapchat, so you can see most of it (and so much of Amos and the chickens and other random things) there if you add me - username: bmarie35

Recently in love
Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there! My mom is on a cruise with my dad right now - they are celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary. And you guys - they are LOVING this time in their life where they just get to be together without jobs traveling the world. Oh how I dream of retirement (in the really-far-away-future, which I'm okay with)! So Happy Mother's Day,  and happy upcoming anniversary, mama!! I love you!

I'll be sharing the Mother's Day present I made/gave my mom before her trip this week on the blog, so stay tuned for that! For now, a photo of us from my wedding courtesy of La Luz

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Coming this week
What I gave my mom for her trip/Mother's Day.
Some outfits from this week, since I was in town to take them!
My 4hb eating plan.
May Third Thursday Threads theme announcement!

Posted on May 10, 2015 and filed under Trav & Bri Recently.

Tears And Stains

I wore this outfit all day and then realized I had an ENORMOUS hole - basically the entire underside of my left arm - in the cardigan. One of my favorites, and not an easy spot to repair, although it is kind of near a seam so I can hopefully fix it. But no one told me all day! Maybe it wasn't noticeable? Or maybe it was but no one thought to mention it?! Do you guys tell people when you see them wearing something with a hole? Or something on it that can easily be brushed off, like some pollen from walking by some flowers too close (happened to me last week)? Apparently no one tells people things like this! Anyway, now this is getting added to the pile of items needing is a much bigger pile than I can handle in one sitting, especially without a sewing machine. 

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Shirt: Le Tote  |  Cardigan: BP (similar)  |  Pants: LOFT (similar)  |  Booties: BP

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Other things this week:

  • The chickens are no longer under their heat lamp, which means they are getting close to ready to be outside permanently. Until then, our guest bathroom smells like a farm. 
  • This time next week I'll be in Chicago with my sister. I've been working on lots of little surprises for her, and I'm so excited to have four days with JUST her in a place we've never been together.
  • I've been doing the 4hb for an entire week now, and I'm down 5lbs so far! I weigh myself every day with this eating plan because my weight tends to fluctuate a bunch (especially given the cheat day) and it keeps me motivated to see that trend going down.
  • Travis is off on a bachelor party this weekend, which means I'll have the house to myself and will be able to check lots of things off my list - including some work on the blog to fix the final few glitches from the Squarespace cut-over. 
  • This shirt is from Le Tote - I got a tote this week that included the thickest sweater-coat thing ever, which I (hopefully) won't get a chance to wear except for at night since we've had such nice weather. We'll see, though - spring in Seattle can be pretty unpredictable. 
Posted on May 8, 2015 and filed under Work Clothes.