Feeling Fierce: Poncho it up

Poncho: Anthropologie, Jeans: Bootlegger, Ankle Boots: Urban Outfitters, Satchel: Plenty

I have struggled with what to make of my desire to still post some of my daily outfits now that my 30 for 30 challenge is over. Not to mention I get such a great and fantastic response from all of you readers who seem to enjoy what I choose to wear everyday. I struggle because here’s the thing- I enjoy clothes… I love style… and I like to shop. But I have no desire to be a fashion or style blogger. So I was left questioning, can I still create outfit posts without dedicating my blog to style?

Short Answer: Yes

Long Answer: I guess that’s the great thing about personal blogs. You can make your blog your own. It’s yours! There’s no need to try and fit yourself into a specific category of blogger. I call this blog a lifestyle blog for sake of introductions, but I can assure you it will be a rare sight to see me tackle any DIY projects or arts and crafts common on other lifestyle blogs, as its not really my thing. And that’s ok.

I admire the blogs that make blogging their own like A Beautiful Mess and The Haps (aka Harpers Happenings). They seem to draw readers in because they write from a genuine perspective and with purpose. So I decided to begin a weekly or at least possibly bi-monthly feature called Feeling Fierce.  Taking a cue from Beyonce’s alter ego for when she performs on stage: Sasha Fierce (LOVE HER!), it’s for those days when my alter fashionista ego comes out and I dress up and I look good. And thats when I want to show my awesome outfit off to the world! If I sound a little full of myself… its because when I feel like I am in a great outfit, I kind of am. This is how every woman should feel when they put on clothes they love. Fierce.

My new favorite trend everyone already has in their closet: cuffed jeans. Roll them up, wear them with ankle boots and its instant chic. Instant Fierce…. with a capital F.

By the way I should mention here that I LOVE Beyonce. I adore her.  Have you checked out her blog on tumblr? Simply amazing and artfully inspiring. Click here to see it. Fierce! Ok that was the last one…

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30 for 30 recap: Summer Edition

Looking at all the outfits brings two thoughts to mind:

First, it’s kind of cool to see a gallery of your “outfits” all together like this. It’s kind of like an a-ha moment of “oh, so that’s what I look like everyday…”

And secondly, I think…Holy crap, that’s a month worth of outfits! From only 30 pieces in MY closet.

30 pieces of clothing are a lot in retrospect. And I think if I had wanted to make this challenge harder, I could have. Like including shoes and accessories as a part of my 30. But I don’t think that was the point. At least not for me. I think the point was learning that I DO have something to wear. And that BUYING SOMETHING NEW every time I feel like I don’t have anything to wear is just silly. It’s learning to make do with what I have and stop thinking I need something else to make my closet complete. Trust me, if you have as many clothes as I do, you’re pretty much set.

With that said, I am not a completely reformed woman. There are things I still want to buy this Fall… but there are few things I am keeping in mind as I head into the Fall shopping season.

1. Continue to utilize what I already have in my closet. I’ve decided I am going to do this by… (and don’t laugh)… writing down all the outfits I plan to wear  this September (at least on the weekdays) out on a piece of paper.  That’s 20 outfits I already have in my closet today that I am going to pre-plan to wear this month.  The list won’t be set in stone, but I think it might help me resist the urge to buy a new blouse, skirt or pair of pants if I already know I have something to wear. I’ll let you know if it works!

2.  Set a monthly clothing budget. Believe it or not I’ve never done this before. Mostly because I think in the past I’ve been in denial about how much I actually enjoy spending on clothing. The blogger from J’s Everyday Fashion has a great post about this (click here to read it). She sets a clothing budget for herself every month and doesn’t go over it (so she claims). At the end of the month she is out of the red, doesn’t feel guilty about her purchases and has clothes she actually loves, not impulse buys. Now her clothing budget is substantially more than mine will be, but I think its important to pick a number that’s reasonable for you personally and of course works with your financial situation.

3. Do your research… look at clothes in magazines and online.  I have been going back and forth about this but I think ultimately it helps more than it hurts. I have noted that picking up fashion magazines and looking through them often encourages me to buy more things than I actually need, but at the same time looking through them as well as viewing pictures online also makes me realize the trends I would like to try and trends I hate. The bottom line is… I know I am going to be buying those magazines anyway because I enjoy them very very much, so might as well treat it like research (although now this sounds like more of a justification of a previous habit rather than something new I am keeping in mind as I head to the mall). Either way, I believe its important to figure out what you really want. And then go try and find it for the price you are comfortable with.

For example I know now after flipping through the latest edition of People Style Watch that me and peplums? Never going to happen. However the black leather trend this fall? I think I like it. Although for me it will mostly likely be faux leather.

Do you have any tips for sticking to a clothing budget this fall? Let me know!

day 30: the end!

T-shirt: Urban Outfitters, Jeans: Levi’s, Necklace: American Eagle, Glasses: Derek Cardigan from ClearlyContacts.ca

I am trying to wink in this photo, but am failing miserably…

It’s the end of an era! Well no, not really. But it is the end of Holly and I’s 30 for 30 challenge. I am happy, relieved and excited its over.

I am looking forward to accessing the rest of my closet… to not taking my photo everyday (props to style bloggers for doing this!), and looking forward to going shopping!

As for what I will buy now that it’s over? Well, to tell you the truth I’ve already treated myself to the in stride jacket from lululemon. I’ve had my eye on for a while. I’ve wanted a great zip up jacket from lululemon since my university days, but I never bought one because I thought they were too expensive. And then I realized I am a grown woman with a full-time job and I am tired of not buying things that I really want, or have wanted for several years because they are too expensive (within reason of course). Because most of the time I end up buying cheap substitutes that I don’t love… and then after buying the cheap substitutes year after year I’ve basically bought the more expensive item I loved a couple of times over. I understand that most of us need the large amount of money up front to purchase these expensive investment pieces, but with the money I’ve saved by doing this 30 for 30 challenge I realized I could afford the lululemon jacket.

I think that’s one important thing to take away from this 30 for 30 challenge: your closet should be quality over quantity. Buy the things you want and love. Don’t buy something just because its ok…. or it works. If you have to pay a little more for something you will love for years to come then pay the money upfront and stop lusting after it. It’s far better to have a closet with fewer items but items you absolutely love, as opposed to a closet with a ton of items but nothing that you can’t wait to wear.