The Skirt Degree

Along with sweaters, finding skirts in appropriate length to one’s height is a challenge. Albeit initially to a lesser degree than the former category of clothing, the need for length-appropriate sizing is only amplified as one ascends in age. Only one of the plaid skirts from Tuesday’s post was available in longer length and because it is technically a mini-skirt, I would not even think about wearing it sans tall sizing.

Several of the below skirts are available in tall sizes. I have two of the color ways from last year in the first skirt and am consequently obsessively on the look out for the next time a generous promotion posts. Consider the academic green, coral, and brilliant fuchsia as good as in my closet.

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Freedom of Beach

Our time in Monterey is coming to an end and we are making the most of our last three weeks on the peninsula. We are looking forward to next cross country road trip and our subsequent relocation to Washington DC. I spent the Obama years going to graduate school within the Beltway and subsequently working in the District. After growing up in the Deep South, that 2008 move was a welcomed change and I will always look back on that time, just being independent for the seemingly the first time in my life, ever so fondly. As stoked as I am for returning to the east coast, I will miss the mellow pace of the west coast.

My only regret is that we will be moving to the District just in time for peak humidity and heat, rivaled only by that on the Mississippi Gulf Coast but minus the sea breeze. {I distinctly remember the heat of the summer of 2013. I walked to and from work in Georgetown, including a hiking up Book Hill in the mornings. That August was as hot as the devil’s hole.} Until then, I will be making the most of our time on the Pacific and the associated temperate weather.

Previous generations of this particular polo style were too boxy for a 6′-2″ frame. I love that this version was long enough for my torso. The shorts are from the Vineyard Vines by Target collaboration and are unfortunately long gone from the online store, as of about twenty minutes after the collaboration went live. In addition to liking the stretch patchwork fabric (so much so, that I purchased the boy version of the shorts for three of my nephews), the higher rise and ever-so-slight longer inseam of the shorts is ideal for a taller gal.

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Beach Therapy

The husband and I are making the most out of our last days on the Monterey. Between packing up our home (even though it was only for three months, anywhere feels like home when my husband is there), we have a bucket list of items to do prior to leaving the peninsula next week, including visits to the Monterey Museum of Art, Monterey Aquarium (we only live next door to it), more walks to the beach in Pacific Grove, and so many restaurants.

Pacific Grove has the qualities of which non-Monterey residents probably picture Monterey to be, at least by Big Little Lies standards. While Monterey is next level beautiful, Pacific Grove is just a few degrees more serene and less touristy. It also has the best beach which is very walkable from our house. It is on the top tip of the peninsula and kind of a peninsula of itself. As I was venturing out to Pacific Grove earlier this week, the sun over Monterey disappeared and a mist over PG emerged. Gone was the sun, replaced by the moodiest of midday clouds. It was the Wes Anderson of summer weather.

I already packed up a ton of my outfits in preparation for our cross country move. I decided that the vintage Lilly Pulitzer shifts should not be packed in my duffel bag; they are better off saved for my east coast antics later this summer anyways. Lately it has been polo shirts and chino shorts. The shirt is from the Vineyard Vines by Target collaboration and is long gone. The shorts are from J.Crew (last seen on the blog here). I recently retired all of my three inch inseam shorts. I think it is best to start covering up, as I am moving into my mid-thirties. To be honest, I probably should have been wearing the five inch inseam shorts all along. Lesson learned.

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Sideways

While Jamie and I were in Palm Springs, I found the most fantastic vintage store adjacent to the place we had Sunday brunch. The Frippery is a vintage lover’s gold mine.

Post-brunch, I dragged Jamie and my maid of honor who was also in Palm Springs, in the store. While Jamie went out on a mission for cold brew, Amanda graciously waited for me to seemingly try on dress after dress, giving me the honest feedback. In addition to scoring a dress, Amanda discovered several concert buttons circa the 1980s: Adam and the Ants, The Cars, The Clash, and the Stray Cats. (The latter reminded me of Bret Easton Ellis’ The Informers mom character wondering what a stray cat was.)

About the dress: I do not know the brand and I do not care. The acid color fever dream of the print was enough to sell me. I love that it is cut generously though the midsection. I know what you are thinking and before you say it: It is not a maternity dress. I carefully inspected the cut and can confirm that there is not extra fabric at the stomach; it is simply a trapeze cut dress.

After Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Atascadero, and Monterey, Jamie and I concluded our friendship roadtrip in Napa.

My husband and I are members of several wineries but our favorite is Gundlach Bundschu; we even celebrated our engagement weekend there. After the friendship roadship wine tasting, we wandered the grounds. Though my husband and I used to visit all the time, it occurred to me that we had only been there in the winter. Running from the car to the tasting room without considering walking the grounds was standard. This time, we walked the grounds and am kicking myself that we had not explored it sooner.

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The Lookbook is Here // #EDSFTG featuring @Target and @VineyardVines

The Vineyard Vines and Target lookbook dropped yesterday. Offerings included everything from the iconic patchwork print, whale logo, and polo shirt to items that look more seasonal. I was disappointed to see that any iteration of the ever-present heritage canvas tote bag or even a weekender was not included in the collection. I guess I will just have to buy that from the standard line. Le sigh.

Nevertheless, this is what I have my eyes on for when the collection drops on May 19th:

I want the pullover for my sister, the shorts for myself, and polo for my mom. Ideally, I want all three of the items for all three of us. Triplets!

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Ever since my parents retired, they have been living the life of leisure. On the coast that means fishing, grilling, and hanging out in the pool. When my husband and I visit them, we get to live that life of leisure for a week. The polo is perfect to pull on with the swim trunks to run to our local poboy place (holla Pirates Cove!) to pick up lunch midday.

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Speaking of our yearly week long life of leisure on the coast, I should order and send these home items straight to my parents house for this year’s Independence Day. Our trip is a tradition that goes back to 2014, when I brought my then-boyfriend / now-husband to my parents’ house for the first time and introduced him to the legends themselves. While my parents go grocery shopping in the days leading up to our visit, I usually send some items their way. In years past I sent flamingo and pineapple floats. This year, beach towels and beach chairs and beach balls.

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This is not my biological clock ticking. My sister-in-law has a four month old and he is just the cutest, most mellow guy ever, especially in comparison to his two older rambunctious brothers.

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I cannot shop for the baby without shopping for the big brothers. Or the cousins. I have three nieces and four nephews, not including the baby. The JV squad is the best. The girls are always getting into something be it camping, hunting, or packing trails. True story: The middle niece once misunderstood her momma’s directions and tried to pack a snow trail to Nana’s house the next town over, not Nana’s land the next parcel over as her momma intended. The Lilly x Target rompers I bought the two oldest girls four years ago were hits. I am betting on these rompers for the little ladies and the newest member of the #girlsquad.

And the boys will wear whatever their moms pick out for them.

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Will you be at the local Target in line when the store opens or rage tweeting when the collection goes live online?

sīrsakar 2019

Within the last two weeks, retailers have released seersucker styles. I do not know about you, but this is the only evidence I need that spring is about to turn and after a long winter spent wearing black opaque tights, we can sport the seasonal summer fabric.

I wrote about Capitol Hill’s seersucker Thursdays last year on the blog. It was brought back by Mississippi politician Trent Lott, but make no mistake, a penchant for the lightweight breathable fabric and an adolescence growing up in Mississippi is where my similarities end with the former senator.

I digress.

Seersucker is coming in hot this year. (See what I did there?) There are so many options in terms of styles and price points. I even included some marked down styles that are in stock from last summer, which is part of the reason that I am such a fan of seersucker. Since it is such a classic fabric, it never goes out of style.

shorts // skirt

clockwise from top left: cover up // sleeveless shirt dress // cover up // wrap dress // mixed color dress // boatneck belted dress

v-neck belted dress // // tie dress

clockwise from top left: cropped pant (available in standard, petite, and tall sizing) // tie skirt // curvy fit cropped pant (available in standard and petite sizing) // scallop skort // capri pants (also available in blue and in standard, petite, tall, extended sizes) // tie shorts (also available in pink) // high waisted wide legged cropped pant // critter shorts

wrap dress (also available in pink) // shift dress (also available in blue) // scallop neckline dress (also available in pink)

 patchwork shorts // / pajama pants

clockwise from top left: boat shoes // belt // embroidered pocket square // blue tie // green tie

Skirt Report

Upon news of the collaboration between Vineyard Vines and Target, I was inspired to break out one of my Vineyard Vines skirts (last seen here). While I have a few Vineyard Vines printed skirts perfectly suited for warmer weather, this navy and black striped one is ideal for the colder months. Despite what anyone had to say about the upcoming collaboration, there is nothing like it to increase brand awareness and create buzz.

Further outfit inspiration came from Eric of yesterday’s Style Survey. Discussing style with Eric made me want to incorporate more menswear into my outfits. Not only did I “borrow” one of my husband’s Brooks Brothers button downs which I have been known to “borrow” time and time again, but I took it a step further. I love the Repp stripe and on the way out of the apartment, I grabbed one of my husband’s ties.

I admit that this is not an everyday outfit. The skirt and the shirt and the slingbacks? Yes. I would wear that combination everyday because I cannot say no to a men’s button down or an a-line skirt or a pair of comfortable heels. The tie is where I went a bit over the top. I am constantly looking for a way the Repp stripe into my outfits. While I have a silk tie fabric belt that I incorporate into my outfits whenever possible, I could use it in more colorways other than the navy and red as it coordinates with a limited number of outfits.

Is this lewk Gordon Gekko? Annie Hall? Avril Lavigne? Britney Spears circa Hit Me Baby One More Time? Walk of shame?

Does it matter?

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Collab Factor: @vineyardvines x @Target

The prep world was rocked this past Thursday when Target and Vineyard Vines announced a collaboration. Word on the street is that the prices will range from single digits upwards to $150. Mark your calendars for May 18th, because if past experience is any indicator, the website will crash and there will be lines around the block. #maytheoddsbe ever in your favor.

Before we go on, and I know I have discussed this on the blog before, but I was here for the Lilly Pulitzer for Target collaboration. While I would never pay non-APS pricing for a dress for one of my nieces, I sure did go on to buy two dresses for each of the little ladies. Not only did they go on to literally wear them to death, but these were their first Lilly’s, because Target made it so accessible. Scathing Twitter feedback claimed that Lilly Pulitzer would roll over in her grave, but let’s be honest: Lilly welcomed everyone into her home be it the chicest Palm Beach socialite or the milkman. I think the instant sell out proved the haters incorrect, yes?

Though the Twitterverse did not experience the prepquake that the Lilly Pulitzer for Target did, there was an array of responses…

…from the psyched!…

…to the, shall we say, less than enthused…

(Pull the stick out of your asses, amirite?)

…to those who saw the above {rude} feedback coming…

…to those who may still have PTSD from the Lilly collab…and are ready for a second helping.

Put me in the last camp. I was here for Lilly x Target and I will be here for Vineyard Vines x Target. I have several nieces and nephews who exemplify the good life and sending each a whale happy just may be worth breaking my 2019 shopping moratorium.

Blown Away

My husband and I went to see the Pennsylvania Ballet production of The Nutcracker two Saturdays ago. Before the ballet, we visited our friends from the Young Friends Group for drinks. Two wines and some shrimp cocktail later and we headed to the Academy of Music Theatre. That night was the Young Friends of the Pennsylvania Ballet holiday party, followed by a late dinner at Butcher and Singer. Followed by a day-long hangover. I really need to lay off the gin martinis. Sunday Scaries turned up to eleven.

To say Saturday was windy, is an understatement. Though I love the skirt I chose for the day (last seen here), it was too swingy for the conditions. Thank sweet baby Jesus for the more structured lining. Still, I felt the need to hold the copious layer of fabric down as we made our way through Center City. While it was originally sold four years ago (and I am still wearing mine, thank you), there are a few sizes of this exact skirt on the secondary market. I also found a near identical one just released.

The shirt (last seen here) is one that I loved so much, that I bought in two colors. It comes in tall, as well as standard and petite sizes. Truth be told, this probably would not be a shirt I would purchase if it were on final sale. I had to buy and return many identical ones, as the keyhole button closure was too taut and would not unbutton on several of the shirts.

This coat is from 2012. I remember being so amped when I found out it was available in tall. Just out of graduate school, I waited for it to go on promotion and bought it. Given that I am wearing it six years later, I think we can confirm that it was a good wardrobe investment. I was shocked – shocked – when I found out how many are on the secondary market and I linked them below. Trust me when I say, that this coat is a fantastic one.

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Wooded Whiskey

Several weekends ago my husband had to be out of the country for work.

Naturally, I called Jamie to see if he wanted to visit Philadelphia for the weekend. Affirmative. We had one of the best weekends in recent memory, rivaled only by the one in which we headed out to the woods, drank whiskey, and threw some hatches at a tree.

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Our Saturday brunch commenced with a Bloody Mary custom bar cart at Urban Farmer. After indulging in biscuits, bacon, and Bloodies, we visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art and along with the latest exhibit, walked through a wing that always seems to be closed on my past vists to the museum. Lots of Mondrian, Matisse, and Monet.

Philadelphia loves their Christmas markets. Blowing through the market at JFK Love Park and Dilworth Plaza and an unsuccessful attempt at getting Jamie to agree to go ice skating, we ended up netting some truffle oil, macarons, and beer. It was the exact sustainance required for an hour shopping on Walnut Street before heading to Sampan for the daily happy hour. Jamie was shocked at how many people were waiting outside for seats at the bar, but being the seasoned savvy Philadelphian, I knew getting there early would be necessary.

Several cocktails and appetizers later (chicken bao buns, look them up), we stumbled out of the bar. A stop at a few local boutiques and West Elm later, we were on our way back to Walnut Street. Paper Source, Theory, Brooks Brothers. Two rounds of martinis with blue cheese stuffed olives at Butcher and Singer. We scampered to make our reservation at Parc, where were indulged in a butter-laden dinner.

That night we fell asleep watching holiday movies and taking out the macarons. I do not recall, but Jamie shook me while I was asleep on the armchair / ottoman and encouraged me to make the move to the bed. Again, I do not recall. I woke up spooning the cashmere sweater dress was wearing the day prior.

Friendship.

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Breaking Plaid Part II featuring Hotel Marblehead

for part II…

Last week, I wrote about mixing patterns. Decidedly inspired by Blair Waldorf, seasoned in the art of combining floral / plaids / dots / gingham, I started walking on the wild side circa 2007. I am not saying that I am an expert at print mixing, but yes, yes I am. For over a decade, I have been following Eric Daman’s lead. The most important thing to mix in? Confidence.

I typically never wear two types of the same kind of pattern, which makes this outfit a bit iconoclastic for me. While I am wearing two plaids, it works because the patterns are at different levels of intensity. The shirt is the clear bolder and more dominant piece. The skirt is much more subtle, as it is a black-on-black tonal pattern.

I bought the shirt two years ago, but it gets reissued every holiday season, and in tall and petite sizes. The skirt is long gone, as I bought it circa 2014; however it is all over the secondary market. Brooks Brothers released a similar polka dotted version for holiday this year and had I not already had the Vineyard Vines style, I would jump on the Red Fleece piece in a heartbeat.

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The Apples of My Eye

What is better than hanging out with your favorite person ever? Getting to hang out with my favorite person ever (my husband) and my number two (Jamie). I truly lucked out that they get along so well.

In the past few weeks, I have posted photos of myself and Jamie on my Instagram feed. All parties involved find it hilarious when people mistake him for my husband. Comments abound. “You look so cute together!” “Your hubby [Sidebar: That word makes me nauseous.] is so good looking.” “How long have you been married?”

I officially met Jamie only about seven years ago. In the two years prior to our introduction, we went to the same graduate school and as such, traveled in the same social circle and attended the same birthday / Halloween / Jersey Shore-themed parties. It was not until a fateful night in late 2011 that we both landed at the same going-away party for a mutual friend at the second floor of Wonderland Ballroom and bonded over #cherryvodkashots and #dancinghot.

Cut to six years later and he was my bridesman. My side of the wedding party and I were raging out for my bachelorette when he and I were told by a local bargoer that we were so cute together.

Fact. #toottootbeepbeep 

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I am aware that my archery form is not….perfect. Looking at the photos, I realize that my left hand looks as though I am trying to shoot with a pool cue and could likely damage or even lose that pointer finger. I am always surprised at how challenging it is to aim and control the bow and arrow. (I guess this explains why the Archery category in my Barcelona Olympics 1992 Sega Genesis videogame was so difficult.) I was shocked at how sore my right shoulder was the next morning. It makes me wonder: do archers only bulk up on their dominant side?

Note: No Jamies were hurt in the production of these photographs. Cut to my husband directing me not to actually aim at him.

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