© Style Dtour 2016. Affiliate links are used and may result in commission earnings. Powered by Blogger.

2016 Superlatives...

...and now, I present some of my favorite and least favorite purchases from 2016. For the past 3 years, throughout the year, I keep an excel chart of all of the items that I purchase, and include data such as retail price, how much I paid for it, where I got it, online vs in-store, and general thoughts (could include if I had to get it tailored before wearing, if it is Made in America, etc.), and then at the end of the year I go through and review/analyze what I bought. This might sound clinical, or crazy, but I like shopping and my system helps me identify trends from my own shopping data. 
     For example, last year I noticed that most of the items that I purchased and never really wore/lost interest in quickly were items I ordered online from J. Crew and Banana Republic. That helped me curb mindless online sale shopping at both of those places, and remind me that if I am going to shop at either store, I need to do it in person.
       This year, just to give you a flavoring, 31% of the clothes I bought were dresses, 42% of the items I bought were used or second-hand, and I saved, on average, 79% off of the retail price of all of the clothing I bought. That last number is heavily weighted by the secondhand shopping, and some key Nordstrom Rack and RealReal.com clearance item finds. 
1. Best Sport: Rag & Bone Varsity Jacket
Jacket  Rag & Bone
Pants | Joe's Jeans
This first piece is a great example of my commitment to bargain hunting. I really wanted a varsity jacket, and had seen a few Rag & Bone ones, but did not want to, and could not, pay $500 or more (retail here, although mine, to be fair, is probably last year's model) for one. I waited and waited and eventually the one I am wearing above popped up on the RealReal for less than $80. Boom. It was one size larger than I would have ordered normally, but the slouchy look totally works on this piece and everything else about it was exactly what I wanted, so I purchased. 
I really adore it and wear it all the time, even though sometimes I think it makes me look like a local high school student. Go Bulldogs? 
2. Most Unflattering: Caslon Pants

The back of these pants is pretty unflattering - even more so in person. I ordered online, drawn in by a $15 price tag, and then missed the return window, so here they sit in my closet. I will probably force myself to wear them to work one time, and then donate them. Mental note to stop adding things to cart just because they are cheap, or because I am like $8 away from free shipping.

3. Best Assist
These pants, on the other hand, feel like they were made for me. Both the top and bottom here were actually random second-hand finds that I did not initially intend to try on. In both instances, I was in the dressing room and needed a top/a bottom, because I was wearing a dress that day and trying on a top/a bottom, so I randomly grabbed these from the rack to assist me in the dressing room. I'm so glad I did because I now wear this top once a week (who knew a metallic could be so versatile....probably Stacey London actually...), and I have worn these jeans multiple times a week, to be frank. 
Long live the skinny jean! 
Top | Calvin Klein
Pants | Citizens of Humanity

Back in Black

It's been cold and overcast, and I've retreated to a sleek, black look. I'm excited for this year to be over, and I'm looking forward to putting together a look at my best (and, more interesting) my worst purchases from 2016. 
Something that definitely will not be on the worst list (aside from the fact that I got it in 2014), is this jacket. I bought it as a gift for myself at the start of a big life achievement, and then was too scared to wear it for another 6 months because I didn't want anything to happen to it and I can be overly precious with my clothes sometimes. Clearly I got over that fear, which is good, because I needed this jacket to add some edge to an otherwise very feminine wrap dress (last seen when I was channeling Lorelai Gilmore). I added a beanie, gloves, and my walking-to-work shoes, and I was ready for the gloom.  
Jacket | Veda Max Classic in P
Dress | BCBGeneration
Shoes | Asics Onitsuka Tiger Mexico 66
Bag | Cuyana

Seen here with my commuting shoes.
It looks good unzipped or with the collar popped.

Last of the Poinsettias

Rag & Bone Convertible Coat
Coat | Rag & Bone
Pants | Citizens of Humanity
Shoes | Rachel Comey Mars
Clutch (below) | Target
I hope you had a relaxing and merry holiday. My picture spot had some poinsettias added around Christmas, making all my photos a little more festive, and these are the last of those photos. 
First up - a holiday-appropriate coat if I ever saw one. This one is XS in Rag & Bone and I got it on extra clearance on the RealReal. The best part is that what looks like black piping is actually zippers - the coat unzips around the waist, and becomes a moto jacket! I think it might be a little big, and the arms are a tad long, but the cocoon coat look is in so I just started wearing it - fit be damned. 
A rare smile in these photos...
 Second, a casual weekend look which features one of my favorite t-shirts. It is a satisfyingly thick cotton and a cool stained glass print. Since the top is various shades of grey, as is my jacket, I used the print in the shirt and quilted texture of the jacket to make the outfit more visually interesting. The jacket is still available at Alternative Apparel, and if you wait, they usually have pretty significant sales, should you have any interest in knowing that information. 
Top | J. Crew Factory
Jacket | Alternative Apparel (still available)
Jeans | Paige
Shoes | Frye Veronica Short
Bag | Mansur Gavriel Mini Bucket (read my review here)
Thanks for stopping by!

What's Old is New Again + Happy Holiday Reading

Top | J. Crew (thrifted)
Skirt | Theory
Boots | Bally (vintage)
Necklace | J Hannah x Winden "Fine"
I was struggling the other morning when getting dressed. I kept trying on pieces, and then shrugging and thinking - maybe different pants...maybe with a different color sweater...I ultimately pulled this outfit and was so pleased - I will probably be re-wearing it many times this winter. 
I am particularly pleased with this look because it incorporates so many elements of my personal style, such as:
1. There Are No Rules
Just as true today as it was in the Matrix - there is no spoon, and there are no rules. One rule that you often hear is around color - you shouldn't mix brown and black, as well as you shouldn't mix navy and black. This outfit has black (the sweater), navy (the skirt) and brown (the boots) and I think it all going together quite well. I think all three might vibe so well because they are all heavily saturated, rich versions of their color - i.e. I don't think a baby blue or a faded black would work as well in this outfit. 
Another rule, at least that I think about, is the idea of which length's and cuts look good on petite women. I've heard short women shy away from both longer or midi length skirts, as well as tall boots. I think, again, it is about proportion. Here, picking a longer skirt that comes down to meet the top of the boots feels very cool, rather than that my skirt is too long or the clothes are just too big for me. I think the fact that the skirt is high-waisted helps with this, since it makes the bottom half of my body appear longer. Similarly, the leather boots are sexy enough so that this very covered up look doesn't seem overly conservative. 
2. Mixing New/Old + High/Low
This outfit is a great example of mixing vintage and modern with varying price points. This cashmere-blend sweater, which is J. Crew, I got at Goodwill (almost a year ago to the day), and cost me a whopping $5. The skirt, while it is suede, and Theory (both of which, as you imagine, increase the retail price) I found at mark-down clearance at Nordstrom Rack. The necklace is totally contemporary, and also comes in rose gold. 
The piece-de-resistance, however, is the boots. These boots actually belonged to my mom, and are from the 80s. I'm not sure why she kept them all these years since they did not fit her anymore (especially because she is a famed de-clutter-er) but I am really glad she did. She gave them to me when I was in high school - and all I had to do was have them re-soled, and they were perfect. The condition is great, and they totally look like they could be a contemporary find. I'm not saying everyone has awesome boots sitting in a parent's closet, but there are a lot of great consignment and thrift stores where you can shop for vintage and thrift pieces that are a lot cheaper than what you'll find new, online or at the mall.  

Office Snuggie

Cardigan | 8telier
Pants | See Thru Soul
Boots | Fyre Dorado Riding
 I'm sure I've mentioned this before, but my office is freezing. Add to that the fact that I am someone who is typically always cold, and it is rough. Rough my friends. As such, I am always looking for something that can essentially function as an office blanket. This cardigan by 8telier is pretty darn close. It is soft, warm, and sort of has a blanket-essence about it, but it is also definitely work appropriate. I also love that it has different colors on the outside and the liner. If it only had pockets, I would probably layer it over my other clothes everyday. 
Also, to answer what is your obviously your next question, yes, those are two life size "little drummer boys" in the photo behind me. 
I added a pin - to give it a little something-something. 
When you're cold at work - how do you cope?

The Waiting Game

Jacket | Rebecca Taylor
Dress | Rebecca Taylor
Bag | Mansur Gavriel 
I did not realize until I went to write the caption on the photo above that I was rocking a Rebecca Taylor double feature. I really like her clothes (obviously), which are always fun feminine pieces with interesting details. 
I first encountered this dress at a Nordstrom Rack, and instantly liked the fact that it would be a patterned pocket dress to add to my work collection, but the price was just a little more than I wanted to spend. Pro, it was work appropriate, could pair with a lot of different pieces (blazer, leather jacket, long cardigan) and would look good "winterized" i.e. with tights and boots. Con: it is silk, so dry clean only and I have a lot of dresses. 
I hemmed and hawed and ultimately decided to walk away. Then, almost two months later I found it again at Simply Chic in SF, in my size, and for 30% less than I had initially seen it! I figured it was a sign and purchased right away. 
Close up of the great lace texture on the jacket, and the floral print.
 Do you ever pass in the store and regret it? Have you ever gone back to get something you left behind?

Think Pink

Sweater | J. Crew (old)
Blazer | Theory
Jeans | DL1961
Shoes | J. Crew Cece Flat (certain colors on sale)
I wear what is essentially the same outfit to work quite a bit: jeans or tailored trousers, a sweater, and a blazer. (I'm not sure if that is disappointing to hear from what is supposed to be a style blog, but it's the truth! Also, I'll resist the urge to go all, A Few Good Men, on you...) 
As such, I look for special pieces that make that "uniform" a little more interesting and fun. I like this sweater because it has a small surprise: the back is different than the front, so it feels like a totally different piece when layered under a jacket, as opposed to when worn solo.
I really embraced the girlish colors and paired the sweater with my trusty pink flats, making for a lighthearted and easy-to-wear work outfit. 
What is your work uniform and how do you keep it interesting?


A bauble is technically any small, showy trinket or decoration, but whenever I hear the word bauble I always picture small, bubbly beads, such as the ones on this necklace. It is also such a great word to say - it sort of sounds like the name of a cute, round Pokemon: Bauble bauble.....ok that last one might just be me, and some recent lack of sleep is maybe having an effect.
These photos are a little dark - for example you can't really tell I'm wearing jeans, as opposed to black trousers, but the necklace shines through. I wear it sometimes when I want to liven up an outfit without any additional work. This necklace, in addition to the unusual zippers on the sweater, also add a little polish and visual interest to an otherwise simple, and somewhat staid color palette.
Top | J. Crew
Necklace | Ann Taylor Loft (old)
Pants | AG "Stevie" Ankle Jeans
Shoes | Calvin Klein Kasey Suede
Thanks for stopping by!

Don't Sweat It

Top | Oiselle Lux Hoodie
Pants | Mystery brand (tag has long been removed)
Kicks | Asics
Backpack  Clare V

On the weekends, I often try to dress in a way I perceive as slouchy and cool, but not sloppy. It is a tough needle to thread, and I don't think I always get it right. Also, for some reason, it feels harder to do as a short woman, because the fit needs to be slouchy but not just a size too large. 
This day, though, I felt cool. Oiselle is an athletic clothing company from Seattle, with an awesome female founder (The Woman Who Took On Nike With Running Shorts), and this hoodie is amazing. It is soft, the perfect thickness (not too warm and yet not lacking in warmth) and I really like the color. I paired it with my favorite pair of track pants, pulled up a podcast, and I was out the door. 

 Do you have a go-to "off-duty" cool look?

Should Have Done a D.I.Y.

Blazer | Theory
Sweater | J. Crew
Pants | DL1961
I am slowly but surely incorporating more "holiday" elements into my wardrobe. If it is shiny, sparkly, red, or velvet, there is a good chance I will capitalize on wearing it over the next few weeks. 
This sweater is from J. Crew, and over 3 years old. I fell for it immediately, and then proceeded to rarely wear it because the cashmere pilled at the slightest touch (it isn't a shirt layered under a sweater, the collar is connected). It is a case where, even though I think the sweater is cute, I should have just bought a collared shirt and done my own DIY addition of beads to the collar. (It worked out with my feather blazer). I could have been layering it under different sweaters all of these years for a more versatile look!

 Do you have a look you'd wish you just tackled on your own, instead of buying it - ready made - in stores?

Fringe Factor

This dress makes me think of winter and summer at the same time. I can see it with a metallic sandal or cute wedge, being versatile in the summer, or with black tights, lots of sparkle, and perfect for a holiday party. 
Maje Smocked Fringe Dress
To be fair - this is not how I wore this to work. I added black tights, and an oversized cardigan, as otherwise I think there is a bit too much leg here. I found this dress at ReLove SF and instantly fell in love. I like the fabric, the fringe, and the waist, which is a little unusual. It can be worn all the way pulled down, or folded on top of itself and I think it would also look cool belted, which is how I saw it on Lyst's website:

I have to say though, that this dress is a little finicky - it is mostly cotton but look at the care instructions!  Whatever - I will probably hand wash, dry clean, or just will it to be clean with the power of my mind - hopefully that doesn't disintegrate it = )
Thanks for stopping by!