thrifted ootd: 1 blazer. 5 ways.

With the holidays around the corner and winter already in full swing, I am in desperate need of a new wardrobe rotation. On a recent trip to Savers, I was searching through the racks of blazers, intending to find a nice nude or black, when I found this beautiful plaid number. Still wearing all its original tags ($168!) and in perfect condition, I knew she was coming home with me. And that $20 price tag (plus 20% off) sealed the deal. 

Blazers are the peanut butter & the jelly to any capsule wardrobe. Navy, black, corduroy, silk—they come in every variety and are ready to uplift virtually any closet. But when it comes to finding the right blazer, cut is everything. As much as I love Eliane, her blazer game, or lack thereof, had me skirting the garment for years. 

But as I’ve learned, the blazer doesn’t have to be all business. It can be fun, sporty—even chic. And best of all, it plays very, very well with others. Take a look, I think you’ll see what I mean. 

Look #1 

I’m a simple girl at heart. And nothing makes me happier than a subtle color palette. So for this outfit, I made sure it was architecture, not color, that spoke the loudest. I love the way this loose, playful jumper pairs with the structure and business of the blazer. Add a little bootie action and I’m ready to go to the office or the wine bar.  

Look #2

I’m all about layers, especially during the winter. When pairing similar shades, layering helps create some dimension and prevent grout-fit situations. The pointed leather boots keep this outfit sophisticated and still oh-so-very comfortable.

Look #3

Truth is, my legs won’t see the light of day until at least May. But for the sake of this post, I’ll skip the tights and pretend like its possible to wear this outfit in 35-degree weather. The Eileen Fisher chunky knit and denim skirt are already living so well together. The blazer just steps in to frame the overall look and finish it all off with a touch of maturity. 

Look #4

There’s an undeniable love affair happening between graphic tees and blazers. Men, women, even children rock the duo and nobody can complain because you really do look put together. In hot offices, the t-shirt’s perfect for layering up and down. Plus, even though the look is fairly common, everyone brings their own unique spin to the outfit, making it a signature part of their weekly rotations.

Look #5

The thing I love most about this blazer, in particular, is just how many colors its made up of. Maybe you can’t see all of them, but this blazer has pink, blue, tan, and dark brown hues in its fabric, which makes it all the more versatile for pairing. I can’t get over how perfectly it lives with this satin skirt. The sheen of the fabric is toned down just the right amount by the tans in the blazer. And with my favorite Vans, this outfit is ready for every holiday gathering next week has in store.

slow fashion lookbook: july

July was a scorcher. As one of those AC-deprived people, this time of year is particularly focused on me not melting. That means putting my makeup on directly in front of a fan, wrapping my hair in all kinds of unflattering contortions to keep it from touching my neck and back, and, of course, wearing as little clothing as socially acceptable. 

Fortunately, one of my more recent wardrobe evolutions has been the adoption of light-weight fabrics, many of which happen to be made from natural fibers. Without me saying anything, you can probably think of a whole slew of reasons why natural fibers are superior to their synthetic counterparts. They can support small-scale agriculture and farming, tend to use less energy in their production process, and most are designed to be very breathable. Check, check, and check. 

Wicker Shopper: 

Lately, my feed has been full of woven purses and totes, like these ones featured on The Good Trade. Needless to say, wicker is definitely having a moment and I’m not mad at it.

I found this gem at a farm stand just outside of Saratoga, NY. I regret throwing away the label but I can remember the bag was crafted in Africa and every purchase helped support small, women’s cooperatives. The bag itself is woven from thin straws and the straps are made of either leather or vegan leather. 

I love wicker because it offers a unique type of construction you can’t find in other matierls. It makes this bag a rare breed of accessory, one that’s suited for the beach and a five-star restaurant—not that I see a lot of the latter. 

Yacht Club Shorts: 

Savers for the win. Again. These pre-loved Gap shorts came into my life on the way back from Acadia, ME. A big fan of high waisted shorts, I admittedly had never had much interest in non-denim options, that is until I stumbled upon these 100% cotton bad boys. 

I think we all know cotton is natural. However, not all cotton is produced the same way. Uzbekistan, for example, one of the world’s leading producers of cotton, has been front and center in human rights debates due to child labor and worker exploitation, amongst other issues. On the other end of the spectrum are companies like Knickey, who are getting smarter about cotton by paying attention to both its sourcing and manufacturing processes. 

Because these shorts are Gap and likely a few years old, I’m willing to bet they were not made from sustainable cotton. But, I did buy them second hand—no money is going back to Gap—and despite any ethical issues, they are made from a natural fiber so they won’t shed microplastics in the wash. 

Silky Smooth Tank Top: 

When I was a kid, I remember stealing my mom’s silk scarves…well, momentary, until she took them back only minutes later. Honestly, I still feel a little child-like when I wear silk. But I’ve found the imposter syndrome wavers a bit when I find the right pieces.

This tank top, another post-Acadia find, has a sophisticated cut that’s easily paired with any bottom in my closet. To be honest, I really only bought this piece because a fashion sustainability panelist once said to buy vintage silk whenever you can find it. That said, the top’s grown on me since then and I have no regrets about the purchase. 

slow fashion lookbook: june

June is a funny thing in New England. There are days when the temperature teases you at a chilly 55 degrees. And other days, it’s so sweltering that you double check the calendar just to make sure you didn’t somehow forget it was August. Regardless, after a long winter, nothing feels better than taking off the layers of fleece, wool, and down until you finally remember what you look like when not preparing for a frigid 4-month apocalypse.

During this transition, your closet can be a really fun place to experiment. As the days get longer and I wake up to more and more “mostly sunny” weather reports, my hands automatically reach for sandals instead of boots, capped sleeves over long, bulky sweaters.

But don’t let your excitement for warm weather outway sensibility. Be too hasty with your clothes and you’ll be shivering in the office or sweating your way through an outdoor brunch. Instead, your approach to Sprummer (ha, see what I did there?) should be seasonally collaborative. Wool with bare legs. Lightweight bottoms paired with chunky knits and denim. Boots and summery dresses. The key is knowing what you need to stay a comfortable tempurature while creating enough visual contrast to keep things interesting.

Now, to the closet.

Look 1: Urban Indiana Jones

I’ve always struggled with hats. One, they block my peripheries. I mean if there’s a rogue BMW coming my way—I live in Boston so, likely—and I’m crossing the street, its a draw whether or not I make it to the other side in one piece. My second justification is simply that hats take confidence to wear. They are the adult versions of bras and lipgloss in middle school; you want to wear them but are nervous that you’ll look foolish or get unwanted attention. But snap my bra strap if you will because this hat and I are going to be inseperably this season.

I can’t let the hat get all the credit though. After all, look at these classic high-waisted white slacks! Another thrift find, these pants are equal parts light-weight and elegant (reads: elle-ay-gant). Since they entered my closet, they’ve become my go-to because they play nicely with literally every top in my closet. For this look, I’ve paired them with a cappuccino short-sleeved turtle neck, also thrifted, strappy espadrilles I found on Poshmark, and a long arrowhead necklace reminiscent of my high school years, another Poshmark find. Finish it all off with an oversized denim jacket and you’ve got a casual—yet still put-together—day look.

Look 2: Why Yes, I do Farmers Market

I found this beaut of a summer dress while perusing the shelves of an RI Savers. I normally don’t fall too hard for florals—something about their inexhaustible enthusiasm makes my inner Wednesday Adams squeamish. That said, this dress caught my eye because it was more subdued, still springy and fresh, but with a dark palette to bring it back down to earth. Add to that the high, full-coverage neckline and perfectly tailored form and I was sold.

With it, I paired my ethically and sustainably made Kozii shawl I purchased in Portugal last summer, wicker bag from a farm stand outside Saratoga, NY, and my new summer staple, my Eileen Fisher espadrilles.

This outfit is a great example of how clothes can really set the tone for a season. The dress offers nice grounding while the shawl adds a necessary touch of easy-breezy. Easily transitioned from day to night with the change of a shoe, this dress has earned itself high marks in my seasonal wardrobe.

Look 3: The Notorious RBG

I came upon this incredible skirt at my local thrift shop. I tend to avoid the skirt section altogether, finding I’d rather just wear a dress. Skirts are so often too short, too tight, too long, too sheer, etc. But at the time, I was looking for a longer, slightly billowy skirt to add to my “adulting” repertoire. This one was the ideal length with nice body and a memorable print. It falls perfectly on my natural waist and has just enough wiggle room to tuck in a top.

Keeping with the Ruth BadA$$ persona, I added this cream cowl neck top, another thrifted piece, made from this airy, stretchy material that drapes effortlessly with the rest of the outfit. Then I finished off the look with a classic brown leather tote from Madewell plus a $40 donation to Planned Parenthood and hazah, I was reminescant of the young cieling crusher herself. Well, at least a little bit.