Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year, New Start (Some resolutions and some OOTDs)

Hello everyone, and happy 2011! Now that we're well into this new year (over 24 hours in - no backing out now) I thought it was a good time to take stock of things and reflect on the past year. I actually love making new year's resolutions - whether I keep them or not. The new year is just a great natural marker for this sort of thing, and while we all know that these types of resolutions (e.g. exercise more, shop less, save money, be more organized, lose weight) are often unsuccessful in the long term, I still think it's worthwhile in terms of being an impetus to start making an attempt at change. And um...well, yes. There are some changes I'd like to make this year:

1. Spend less, save more. My last year was enormously productive - for my closet. A little too productive, to be honest. In fact, when I did my end of the year accounting, I was a little appalled at the state of my personal finances. Clothing is my drug of choice (after caffeine), and this is something of which I'm well aware. I've allowed myself a serious relapse in regard to the treatment of this particular addiction, and I'm going to get back on the wagon, everyone. I've recruited support from my husband to keep me on track. The blog will, therefore, be hosting more OOTD photos made up of things already in my closet, and fewer things that are new purchases. I hope you won't mind this too much. 

2. Be neater and more organized. I am not a naturally organized sort of person. For those of you who are into this sort of thing, I'm a Myers-Brigg ENFP, which is classically...well, less than tidy. I'm a stacker. Piles of stuff everywhere. Everywhere. My very forebearing husband says I'm "creatively messy." And while I am well aware that I'm not ever going to be that person with the SUPER neat home or immaculate work space, I think I should find ways to efficiently streamline and organize both my workspace and workflow, so I can be better at using my resources (time, energy, mental effort, creativity, etc) more effectively. Haha, this is a recurring resolution for me, but I'm an eternally optimistic sort, so here goes again!

3. Get fit. I managed to lose my baby/pregnancy weight without too much effort (I attribute this to over a year of breastfeeding, sensible eating, and the genes I inherited from my dad, who's always been a very lean man) but I'm soft and rounded, regardless. I could stand do be more toned and stronger. We have a family membership at our local Y, of which I'm hoping to take better advantage this year. Yep, watch out, everyone. Marathon shopping isn't the only physical activity I'll be capable of, by the end of this  year. (Just a note - my husband actually was carrying quite a bit of excess weight on him, and about 3 months ago, he decided to make some lifestyle changes to lose the weight. He's been enormously successful, and has already dropped 40 lbs!!! Mind you - what he's doing isn't a diet. It's an actual life-change, which he's planning on maintaining for the rest of his life. But I know that losing weight and being healthier is a new year's resolution that many people make and are interested in - so, if you'd like to hear about what he's been doing to lose this weight and his plans for keeping it off, let me know, and I'll ask him to share what he's been doing with you.)

Some OOTDs from the past week:

I became obsessed with the Blueberry Tuft sweater after I saw Emma Pillsbury wearing it on Glee. I found one on ebay, and the husband obligingly bought it for me for Christmas.  

It creates such a girlish silhouette, paired with this skirt, tights, and the bobbed hair, doesn't it?

Sweater: Blueberry Tuft Cardigan, Anthropologie via ebay
Skirt: Mimetic Skirt, Anthropologie via Tien
Tights: Frenchi, Nordstrom Brass Plum (similar here and here)
Shoes: Indigo by Clarks (similar here)

The Big Over Easy: A Nursery Crime

This outfit made me think of the drawings of children you see from turn of the century (19th to the 20th, to be exact) literature, so what better to go with it than a grown-up nursery tale? Jasper Fforde writes some of the most whimsical fiction today -The Eyre Affair being his best known - and the alternate universes he sets his stories in are startlingly like our own, except for some choice (and really fun) differences. If you remember your nursery rhymes and stories (Humpty Dumpty, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Jack and Jill, etc.) and enjoy a bit of whimsy in your reading, I think you'll love these books. Smart and fun crime fiction that's easy on the gore, but not on the imagination.

This outfit came about when I decided that I needed to wear my Circle the Globe skirt more. It's nothing terribly exciting, but it was easy, comfy, and warm enough for me to go without a coat in high-50's/low-60's soCal winter weather.
Sweater: Konnichiwa Sweater, Anthro
Top: Night Skating Top, Anthro 
Tank: Cotton layering tank, Old Navy (similar here)
Skirt: Circle the Globe, Anthro (similar here and here)
Tights: Hue
Boots: Apepazza "Martin" boots

I had a Groupon for Nordstrom Rack that I needed to use before it expired, and after some dedicated hunting (I also zero in on the Savvy and TBD rounders first) I found this Joie dress marked at about 65% off its original price! I loved the colors and print and since I don't really have any dresses in this silhouette, thought it'd make a nice addition to my closet. I wore it with a belt at the empire waist, but think I can possibly do without it too in future wearings.
Sweater: Van Winkle Cardigan (this would work)
Tights: Hue
Boots: Apepazza "Martin" Boots

So, do you make New Year's resolutions? If so, what are they?


  1. I love Jasper Fforde, he's one of my favorite authors. I was lucky enough to meet him while I was studying abroad in England a few years ago. Thanks for getting the word out! His newest, Shades of Grey, is sitting on my nightstand.

  2. I'm definately going to be checking out this author! Sounds like something right up my alley!

    My new years resolution is to not overthink things. Sometimes I create so many possible scenarios that I stifle myself. I also plan on wearing more of what's in my closet. It's not a resolution, really, just something that needs to get done!

  3. Hi Carol! I've been following you a long time and I loe your posts. I totally had that Nordstrom Rack Groupon too (so great!) and had to make time to go before it expired. I got Kate Spade sunglasses and it was totally worth it.

    I love the Blueberry Tufts cardi on you. I can only hope to be as stylish as you when I have 2 children. How do you manage it?

  4. The Mai' Dress is my favorite on you! You look gorgeous in everything, as always, but this dress has a little something special, I think!

    One of my resolutions is to walk for my mind, body and soul! Just take walks- all the time.

  5. Ha, love Jasper Fforde! And I'm a total stacker also- just can't help it! Love the blueberry tuft cardigan on you, and am jealous about the van winkle- missed out on that one.

    I think many of us are going to delve more in our closets this year- Anthropologie may see a precipitous dip in sales for the first quarter

  6. I have a membership to my local Y and my BF is the only one who ever goes, so I am on board with you about needing to get oneself into gear and acquiring some muscle mass!

    Your Apepazza boots are gorgeous and go with everything!

    Happy 2011!

  7. You are so cute in your new sweater! I don't make resolutions, but in 2011 I'd either like to get toned/firm up OR have a fourth baby, I really need to decide which. Heck, I'm not going to waste time on the treadmill if I have a 50lb weight gain on the horizon. Happy New Year!

  8. I'm an ENFP/INFP, too! I've been on a huge kick to get things organized and save/attract energy (having Chronic Fatigue Syndrome has made this a real priority!). I picked up "Getting Things Done" and bought a label maker. I also read "Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui" which hit the message home. I currently have set out piles of all my neglected receipts/files/accounting and am figuring out a master system to wrangle these suckers!! Love all your posts you're very inspiring! I even jotted down a few of your recommended books :)

  9. That sweater looks adorable on you! Emma PIllsbury tends to have that effect on me too! ;)

    Also great resolutions! I too would like to get in better shape, just having trouble finding that motivation!!

  10. Your number 1 and 2 are my number 1 and 2 too! I've honestly spent more money on clothes in the last year since I started shopping at Anthropologie than I have in probably the last 5-7 years total (I never used to be into clothes like I am now). It's gotten bad, real bad and I've told my husband to put me on a strict budget starting yesterday. It's gonna be really hard when I see all the new pretties coming out this Spring/Summer, but I'm sure with everyone's support out there I'll be able to do it and so will you :)

  11. i love your plan to use existing items in your closet in your OTD.I get my best ideas of how to wear my Anthro items from the blogging community. Maybe you show us how both of you might wear the same item in different ways? Happy New year!

  12. wow, 40 lbs!! i definitely want to know your husband's secret! my goal is to get more toned in the new year too. :)

    and your anthro blueberry tuft cardi is super cute and i love how it looks paired with the skirt and tights!

  13. I don't mind at all if you mix and match your current wardrobe this year. It's always good to see bloggers rework an old item.
    I wouldn't have picked you as someone disorganised. I'm worse I thinK! I just throw things everywhere, and my closet is a mess. there's no order, only chaos.
    You look so cute in the Blueberry Tuft sweater. And i just adore your Joie dress - very pretty over tights.

  14. Your #1 is my also my #1 spend less money especially at Anthro. I am determined to not buy any new clothes until my birthday in March! I have so many unworn items sitting in my closet that I could afford some restraint.

  15. I'm also going to exercise your #1 and #2 resolutions this year. I told myself yesterday I would try not to spend any $ on clothes for the month of January because I spent way too much before Christmas. Also, I recently watched a show on TLC called Extreme Couponing and so now I want to try to use coupons whenever I can. Great score on the Joie dress. This is right up my alley, and I love the style.


  16. You look so fantastic in the Bluberry Tufts cardigan. I neglected to even try that one, and now I'm regretting it, of course!

    I'm also going to try to streamline my one new clothing purchase and one new shoes/accessory purchase per month. I think it will be hard, but my closet (and bank account!) demand it!

    Thanks so much for this optimistic take on resolutions. Sometimes I feel goofy and corny making them, but I think it's important nonetheless!

  17. Carol, that Kate Spade typewriter bag that you loved is on sale on Kate Spade website. Plus use the coupon code NEWYEARS25 for an additional 25% off. It could be yours after all!

  18. Funny how all of us Antho addicts are looking to "shop our closets" more and not spend. I too,like Sara, spent more last year on clothes from Anthro than several years combined. I have some lovely things as a result and with some of my staples, there are many, many possibilities, if I just tried a little harder and not do the "safe" thing. I like hearing different people's strategies and will look to incorporate the best in mine.

    I have enjoyed this blog a lot and look forward to your progress as I track mine.

  19. YAY!!! I love your style (and the bob), so I'm very excited to be seeing more of your amazing wardrobe!

  20. Thanks for sharing your resolutions (and OOTDs!) with us Carol. It's funny, I tend to write down goals for myself but am resolution-aversive. So I have none this year but I will have goals as the year goes on.

    Isn't it strange how you become a blogger to share your love of clothing and your closet ends up fuller? It's very hard not to buy when you're trying so much on and you get positive feedback on the items. Apologies if I'm repeating myself, but I opened a separate bank account just for spending money and that has helped me tremendously. I wish you luck in keeping yourself in check. It's hard!!

  21. Happy New Year! I adored the Blueberry Tuft cardi when I first saw it on Emma on Glee. And it certainly looks amazing on you! Isn't it wonderful when you're able to find a piece on eBay that you're longing for? (especially when the seller is an anthro sweetheart, and not someone trying to rip you off!)

    New Anthro blog. Check it out and follow!

  22. Happy New Year girls! I was just catching up on your past posts and noticed that Kathryn mentioned the Dried Leaves Dress that got away. I actually saw one today on my travels in size S. If that is your size, email me at jonaomi3 at gmail (and hopefully they still have it of course).

  23. Oh my gosh, the Blueberry Tuft cardigan is DARLING! An it definitely creates a beautiful silhouette with the bobbed hair (which I always love seeing on you) and the skirt. You look very Emma-inspired indeed! And I am impressed with your husband's 40-pound loss! I am looking to make some lifesyle changes too because I need to do something to get healthier PERMANENTLY. So do share the details! I'm looking forward to another year of beautiful outfits from you ladies!

  24. @galsd - Oh, I didn't know he had a new one out! I'm going to have to keep an eye out for it, when I get my next Borders coupon. Thanks!

    @Pamela - Do try him out - he's great! And oh, that's a good resolution (overthinking).

    @Thessa - Thanks! I love Groupons when they're for stores I know I'll be happy to shop in. =) As for dressing when you have kids, well, you have to get dressed anyway, right? Might as well put on something that makes you happy. ^_^

    @Fashion Momma - Thank you! I love the dress too. And walks! What a good resolution! I should do the same. I'm not a good runner, but I'm a very good walker. ^_-

    @thatdamngreendress - Yay for Jasper Fforde and yay for stacking! Haha! I'd hate for Anthro to suffer, but my rate of consumption from last year is just NOT sustainable. Fingers crossed on exercising restraint.

    @Lisa - respecttheshoes - I know, my husband is the only one who goes too! This is going to change this year. =)

    @Jan - your comment made me laugh out loud. Seriously, that's totally how I felt in past years, before Kate. I think we're stopping with the two, though. So exciting to imagine a 4th baby - but, if it ends up being a girl, you'll need to change your blog's name! =D

    @Saskia - yay for NFPs! (My husband is an INFP, so we're quite a pair.) Sounds like you're off to a great start! My first week of the year passed fairly neatly overall...but I'm noticing that all of our living areas are...well, looking lived in, hahaha. I'll need to find some time to clean in the next few days. Thanks for writing!

    @Nicolle - thank you! I know, motivation is a toughy. That one's the most difficult on my list, haha.

    @Sara - we stand together in solidarity! Haha, this first week hasn't been as rough as it'll get in the next few, because I've had a few gift cards from Christmas, to spend. But once those are gone, it's going to be tricksy. New arrivals are so hard to resist! And sale priced items are even harder!

    @For the Love of Anthro - yes, I get so many good ideas from the blogging community too. Thanks for the suggestion!

    @Kileen - thank you! And good grief, you're so tiny - how could you possibly need to lose any weight?

    @vintageglammz - thanks for the support Jen. =) And I'm glad I put up a good front. ^_-

    @Diem - oooh, no new clothes until March! I had a similar notion - that I'd wait until April, when I hopefully get my birthday discount, to buy stuff at Anthro again. And yes, me too - restraint. That's a good one.

    @SweetLaundry - oh, I always have high hopes about couponing, and then, I clip 'em and completely forget I have 'em! Sigh. I think that's where resolution #2 needs to come into play...

    @Jamie - Thank you! And yay for doing goofy and corny things! =) It's always so much better when you're doing these things with other people, isn't it?

    @Bronzi - Haha, yes. Poor Anthropologie is going to see a dip in its first quarter sales at this rate. But it's true - so many of us have so many lovely things. I think we'll be okay if we take a break from adding to our collections. =)

  25. That sweater looks adorable on you! Emma PIllsbury tends to have that effect on me too! ;)