Off the Shoulder Striped Dress/Some Flat Shoe Options

Hey there! While it hasn’t felt like summer lately, I had to take this dress (wearing size L) for a spin anyway. I love it! It’s listed as a mini on the website, but it’s long enough that it doesn’t feel scandalous, it can be worn with or without the tie, and it’s not see through so it doesn’t require a slip. It’ll be awesome for those super hot days.

I’ll likely wear this dress quit a bit this summer, the only downside I’ve found so far is that it wrinkles really easily. But hey, it’s a lot more affordable than this dress that I had been eying! I actually can’t decide which way I like it better, tied or no tie. What do you think? Accentuating the waist is normally a must, but I quite like how it looks without being cinched at the waist. Maybe I’ll try it next with a belt…

As I get older I find I want to wear heels more and more often – maybe I associate them with being “grown up?” There’s something about a good pair of heels that just makes me feel girly and want to strut my stuff! I’ve wanted to get a pair of ankle strap sandals for a loong time now, but I guess I had the idea in my head that they wouldn’t be comfortable or I wouldn’t get much use from them.

I only bought these ankle strap heels on Memorial Day weekend (during my DSW shopping spree – the sales were crazy good!), but I can already tell I’ll wear them a lot. I’m asking myself why I waited so long! The key is treating them like jeans and trying on a ton of options until you find the right one. I tried on what felt like a million different versions of this shoe and this pair was the clear winner of the bunch.

The wider straps on these heels is what I think makes them more comfortable, plus they are under 4″, which is just too high for me to wear for any length of time. And they go with EVERYTHING! They are faux leather, so we’ll see if they hold up, but so far so good!

I know heels are not for everyone and I got a request for some ideas for cute, work appropriate flats. I found a ton on DSW’s website! I don’t wear flats all that much, unless it’s a summery sandal, because I tend to get blisters with flats. I’m considering buying a few pairs of flats now though, look how cute these (1 – perfect for work and they have great reviews, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 – great for dresses!, 7, 8, 9) are! I even found a lower heeled version of the pumps featured in my next post!

Don’t mind me, I’m just admiring the view – lol!

See you later! Love, Kate

Photo credit: Leo Amar

The Oh-So Trendy Neckerchief

Welcome to my bandito moment! Lol

I’ve been looking to get more creative with my scarves (usually I’ll just tie one on my bags to add a little extra pizazz to a simple outfit as shown in the pic below) as I have so many of them lying around and it was fun to try this trend. I’m not one to jump on every trend that comes around, but I have to say I liked this look more than I thought I would.

Jean from www.extrapetite.com turned me on to this scarf from Express and it’s so cute! The also offer it in black and white. I love the pattern and colors – I have a feeling I’ll get a lot of use from it. It can also be tied around the neck like a choker, worn around the wrist or arm, wrapped around the handle of a bag, or even as a headband…there are lots of possibilities!

This sleeveless top (under $11 and available in 4 colors!) is a recent find and I am in love! It may sound weird to be obsessed with such a simple top, but as they say, it’s all in the details. I find myself returning to classic pieces more often than anything else so a good white/off white/ivory tank is a necessity. I have others that are okay, but this one is perfect!

It has 2 layers so it’s not see through, the back has a little button up top so it’s easy to get it on and off without getting makeup everywhere, it washes really well if you hang it dry, it has a flattering V-neck, it’s soft and silky, and – best of all – it doesn’t require a strapless bra. Hallelujah! I actually have a fantastic strapless bra, but let’s not kid ourselves, no strapless bra is as comfortable as a traditional bra. The Body by Victoria line makes the most comfortable bras, hands down. They make up the bulk of my bra collection.

It felt like summer for all of this week until today so I’ve been wearing shorts a lot. These are my go-to light wash pair. They’re from a past season, but I’ve listed look-a-likes here and here. Keep in mind the distressing varies a bit from pair to pair. I really like the midi lengths American Eagle offers. I just cannot do the super short shorts that seem to be so popular these days. Every girl should own at least a light wash pair and a dark wash pair IMO.

I broke out an old Steven by Steve Madden bag that’s been collecting dust in my closet and I’d forgotten how good the quality is within the Steven line! This bag is about 7 years old now and it still looks great. The only upkeep I’ve done is to slap on some leather conditioner (it also cleans the leather). The Steven bags and shoes are at a slightly higher price point, but they usually have a correspondingly higher level of quality and materials. How cute are these options (1, 2, 3, 4)??! And I can see this block heeled pump being a super chic work option.

This is totally unrelated to anything else in this post, but I spotted this  adorable pom pom block heeled sandal today while putting this post together and I immediately wished I had it in my closet. I can’t buy anything right now, but man do I want it! It’s 30% off right now due to Macy’s friends and family sale (FYI it ends May 7th). Just like how Steve Madden has different lines, Sam Edelman has a lower priced line of shoes and bags called Circus.

What are your thoughts on the neckerchief trend? I’d love to hear from you in the comments. Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Photo credit: Leo Amar

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Crochet-Trim Cami

Being on the bustier side I usually stay away from tops that flow out from the bust or neckline as they can easily veer into maternity territory, but with this adorable cami I just didn’t care. It may not be the most flattering shirt I own, but I felt great in it. FYI it would look amazing on someone with more of a boyish body type – as you can see on the website. And it comes in 3 colors!

It’s so light and airy, it was perfect for this past weekend when we experienced a warm spell. It kept me nice and cool, even when the temperature climbed into the high 80’s. It’s slightly sheer, but not so much that it’s see through.

The back is just as adorable as the front! It does wrinkle easily, but it washes really well. I just put it in a wash bag on cold and hung it to dry and it worked perfectly. No ironing needed, woot!

It felt so summery to me that I chose to pair it with a light wash pair of ankle jeggings (no longer available, see some similar options here and here), but it can also be easily “edged” up a bit by pairing it with black or grey jeans or shorts.

I don’t always carry a purse as I like to travel light, so I often throw my necessities into this clutch, which came free with my vegan leather tote from Nordstrom. I like that it has a little strap so you can hang it on your wrist. It’s a great deal at under $50 and it really holds up. I’ve had mine for a couple of years and it still looks great. I want the grey one next!

I wanted to add a little height to this look to try and make it as flattering as possible so my go-to Sam Edelman Torrence sandals (42% off right now and still available in black and oatmeal in some sizes) helped a bit there. I love the comfort of a block heel! Here’s a very similar option with a slightly lower heel that would be great with summer dresses and beyond!

What do you feel best wearing during the hotter months? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section.

Thanks so much for visiting!

Photo credit: Leo Amar

Transitioning From Day to Night

Hello there! Happy Monday!

I love that accessories can elevate a super casual outfit and make it evening appropriate. Since I spend at least one day out of each of my weekends down in San Diego (I’m about 40 minutes north of the city), I don’t want to schlep a bunch of stuff around, and I never know where the day will take me – I’ve become the master of transitioning an outfit from day to night.

I’ve had this T-shirt dress for a while, but it’s just gotten warm enough to wear it. It’s quite short and unfortunately I can’t wear my go-to bloomers underneath because there’s just not enough room in the hips so I had to settle for some bootie shorts. It’s pretty much impossible to bend over and not show everything, but I still really love it. I’m 5’7 so if you’re any taller than me be warned, this might be more of a T-shirt than a dress.

I tend to buy simple, classic pieces that won’t go out of style and this is a great example of that. The curved hem, rolled sleeves, and flattering cut add some interesting details, but it’s still just a t-shirt dress so it can be styled many different ways. And it was under $15 (I got it for $9!). It’s a new favorite for sure!

When it came time to go out in the evening all I had to do was swap my sandals for some low heels (old, but these and these are great) – I adhere to the philosophy of “the shorter the dress, the shorter the heel” to avoid going too sexy – and add a statement necklace (old, love this, this, and this). Easy peasy.

It’s funny, but somehow Sam Edelman has taken over the shoe portion of my closet. Not only does Sam make a stylish shoe, but they are really good quality for the price. Plus I can almost always find my size on sale if I wait long enough, which always helps!

I really liked how both versions of the outfit turned out and I can see myself mixing it up a lot with this dress: a long pendant necklace, scarf, tights, sneaks…the possibilities are endless!

What about you, how do you use accessorize to maximize your outfit options?

Until next time…

Photo credit: Sarah Jordan

Cardiff Bike Ride

Hiya! I hope you’re staying warm and dry – I was just about to go for a walk when it started pouring out of nowhere! I guess that’s a sign it’s time for another blog post! Haha

Recently my friend Sarah and I took advantage of a gorgeous day and biked up and down the Pacific Coast Highway. It was so much fun! I got the usual “you’re wearing that?!” I can’t seem to ever be casual/dressed down enough for my friends. Maybe it’s just because we live in such a casual place? San Diego is flip flop central, after all. Does anyone else get any flak from their friends about their outfit choices or is it just me??

Yes, I did wear my Sam Edelman suede booties (still available in grey suede, saddle suede, and black and saddle leather – all on sale!!) to bike around town and I am not ashamed! When I converted to barefoot shoes I tossed all of my sneakers so I don’t have a lot of options to choose from and the barefoot shoes just aren’t a good fit for the platform pedals.

BTW if anyone reading this is interested in barefoot shoes I highly recommend them, but there are things one should know before transitioning from regular athletic shoes. I’ll do a post with my new fav pair and some tips soon, but just leave me a comment if you have any questions until then. They have completely solved my ankle issues and I love the stability and comfort they offer. Bye bye blisters!!

Sorry the pics are a little dark, we tried a few angles and full sun ended up being too sunny and the shade was a little too dark. We just couldn’t win!

I’m not sure if you can see the detail, but my booties actually have some color in the fringe. It’s a mix of black suede, burgundy suede, and silver. I love how it adds a little oomph to an otherwise fairly basic pair of ankle boots. Sarah compared my boots’ fringe to a grown up version of bike streamers. Remember those?? Fun!

My Zella “Live in Leggings” were a perfect match for the ride and kept me oh so comfy. I paired my leggings with my trusty H&M tank top, which is old, but here’s a similar option. Just size up for a more relaxed fit. I LOVE H&M’s basics section, I get so much use out of my tees and tanks and they are very affordable.

Side note: how cute is this cardi? I saw it as I was getting the link for the tank and I want it!! Grr, not shopping is really hard.

My sweater has sold out, but I’ve linked some similar options here, here, and here. It was always oversized, but it keeps growing every time I wear it. The hazards of knitwear, eh? Ha! I wouldn’t say it’s super warm, but it is super cute and well-suited for the mild SD climate.

I got my Smith sunnies earlier this year and I really like them. The gold on the bottom of the lenses are a nice little touch. I also threw on a necklace from Forever 21. What they have available is always changing, but I can almost always find a cute boho necklace for a ridiculously cheap price.

Well, I gotta get to making some dinner, so farewell and see ya next time! Thanks for visiting!

Photo credit: Sarah Jordan