Color Blocking in the Wild

#InvestmentPiece #coloroblocking #inthewild
#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild
#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild
#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild
#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild
#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild

Do colors make you scared?

Don’t laugh! It’s a serious question. And I have serious answers. (Also a confession: I sometimes get scared of color, too. There’s a reason all black is a go-to outfit. ) I’m sure that I could bring up science, or a color wheel, to talk about what colors go together and why we shouldn’t be scared about mixing them. I could do that. But, I’m not going to-for both of our sakes. Color blocking can be scary, you can have the perfect outfit but you can worry about the colors going together. It is a serious question. And these are my serious answers:

When it comes to color blocking, or any sort of mixing colors, I think that there is only one thing you can do. Try it out . Put on your colors, or lay them next to each other on your bed. Do you like them together? Do they compliment each other? Awesome! You’re ready for step 2! If they don’t, you’re not behind, just try new colors! Once you have colors that you like together, step 2 is super simple. Take your color blocking in the wild . I don’t mean you have to run wild in nature (though I completely support it if you do), but take the outfit for a spin. Go to your event, through your day, to the grocery store. Do you feel comfortable? Do you get compliments? Yay! (I think this is the part where I say we’re ready for step 3; there is no step 3, unless you count putting that outfit into your rotation.) If you don’t, you just go back to your closet and try again! See! Serious answers and a serious plan for getting over our fears about colors!

Right about now you may be thinking that I made this sound a little too simple. I get that, it’s fair criticism. My defense? I think it is that simple. If it’s color, color blocking, or something a bit bigger, I think that we can sometimes over think a problem, when it is really easy. (I’m not the only one guilty of that, right?) Fashion is supposed to be fun. Color blocking is a little like coloring. Let’s keep it simple and let’s not be scared. If I can do it, you can do it. Deal? Deal.

Notes on the Outfit:
These boots are one of my fave things (and name something that doesn’t go with red). They’re dramatic and look great with everything from jeans to shorts to dresses and skirts. I think the key is to balance them with something a bit simple, unless you’re looking for drama!
This maxi shirt dress is a closet staple. It’s perfect for work, and yet can easily be made party ready. It goes great with almost any shoe’ you get to play with accessories depending on your event! (AKA I’m a fan of basics in not-so-basic colors!)

I’ve linked some similar styles below (yes, they are affiliate links, I get a small commission but that doesn’t affect price for you!)

And I would love to know: how do you deal with color blocking fear?

XO RA

#InvestmentPiece #colorblocking #inthewild

Self Love

Investment Piece: Self Love
Investment Piece: Self Love
Investment Piece: Self Love
Investment Piece: Self Love
Investment Piece: Self Love
Investment Piece: Self LoveInvestment Piece: Self Love

This week was a doozy. And there were days when I was so behind I wanted to hide and cry- planned outfits didn’t work, shoots got rained out, many personal and professional things. I had no clue what to shoot or say today. Then I stumbled across this- I still have this outfit. I still wear this outfit. And it made me happy. I don’t think that self-love protects you from anything bad ever happening. But I do think it can get you through (also great jeans!). So this is up as a little reminder to us all!

I share a lot here with you. I’ve written a lot about self love, in various forms; mainly as it’s something that I’ve struggled with, and because I think it’s something that we can all related to. I love fashion, I think it’s freeing, I think fashion let’s you be who you want. However, as women, we live in a society who profits when we don’t love ourselves. We get messages about how we need to be perfect (and how we’re not) and how if we buy xyz product we could finally find self love. Social Media doesn’t help–though sometimes it does. I have to say, as someone who struggles with her body image it’s encouraging to see that everyone has rolls when they twist (because everyone does), and to see that everyone struggles. My personal journey to self love has been hard, and evolving. I’m still struggling to love myself on some days–when I mess up, or am tired, or fall into old patterns.

I made a decision a few years ago that I would be the love of my life, and treat myself as such, and it was the best decision ever. It’s still been difficult. There are still days when I can pick myself apart. There are still days when I’m not very nice to myself. I’m working on it. I’m working on loving me–all of me: my laugh, my lines, my quirks, and my flaws. I’m actively trying to be my own best friend, and the love of my life. I’m hoping that it makes me a better friend, and if there’s ever a lucky someone, a better lover.

This is the most intimate shoot I’ve ever done (the wine was not a prop!). No makeup. At all. A little sunscreen (loves, skin care is important). Nothing in my hair. I love my editorial shoots (it’s what I adore), I love my juxatipositons (I love sharing them with you), but it felt like it was time to really share myself with you. No screens, no distractions, no blurred lines. This is me. And I love me. And I love this community. And I love you for following along.

This is the part where I’m supposed to talk fashion. You need a graphic tee, you know this. I’ve always been a fan of flares and these flare jeans are not only stunning but I get asked where I get them every time I wear them. I’ve linked them and tee options below! But loves, let’s wear amazing fashion and let’s love ourselves. Let’s practice some radical self love this weekend, because that is not exclusive from fashion. In fact, I dare you to make your fashion a celebration of your self love.

XO RA
Note: this post does contain affiliate links. While that does not affect the price for you, I may earn commission from them. Thank you for your support!


Investment Piece: Self Love

Fashion Stories: TV Fashion: The Americans

Most of this is a repost. When I first started this blog, I knew that I wanted to talk (and show!) stunning fashion, outfits- and tell stories. As we know, for me stories and fashion are a part of the same thing. It’s taken me a while to really refine my vision and how I talk about our fashion stories, but the ideas have always been there. At first, I wanted to talk about fashion on TV and Movies (because, as an actress it made sense to me). This was one of my first attempts. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot (again) about costumes and costume designers. I talk a lot about how what we wear tells our stories, and one of the most visible ways (and ironically, one place where we learn how to dress for what we’re trying to express) of fashion story telling are costumes. They let us know so much about a character- who they are, what they like, what they’re dealing with, who they want to be. Costumes are such an important part of any show or movie you’re watching. I promise. So, I’m looking again at what I was thinking about the Americans- and how the story of being a spy is one I’m drawn to. I’ve added a link to an interview with the Costume Design Team from this show- and I’m also currently shopping items like these!
Xo RA

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In case you haven’t been watching, “The Americans” is simply one of the best shows on TV right now (seriously, go binge). It follows two Russian spies, living in the US in the early 80s–and I love everything about it. So much goes into making a great, timeless, compelling show–the story, the actors, the production–but also, the fashion. When I completely fall for a show, like I have with “The Americans”, I find myself wanting to live in their world, and while that isn’t always possible, dressing like them can be.

THE AMERICANS -- (Premieres Early 2013) Pictured: Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings -- Photo CR: Jeff Neira/FX
THE AMERICANS — (Premieres Early 2013) Pictured: Keri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings — Photo CR: Jeff Neira/FX

Let’s be clear, I’m not calling for a return to all 80s fashion (let’s just say no to big shoulder pads), but when fashion is great, done well, and timeless, elements of any period can be added to your wardrobe. It’s a case of “classic fashion never goes out of style”. The fashion on “The Americans” is not only great and classic–a lot of it would look modern today!

A Great Coat and Boots
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It’s on every “must have” or “invest” list–a great coat and a great trench. When it’s paired with boots it’s a classic outfit–and all over Instagram as we speak. Spring is a great time to buy a coat on sale, and trenches are always a good investment. I’m a fan of high boots, they never go out of style.
Some of my picks:
Trenches: Ralph Lauren, Burberry, and Zara
Boots: Stuart Weitzman, Frye, and Steve Madden

Wrap Dresses

Subject: The Americans On 2013-04-08, at 3:50 PM, Yeo, Debra wrote: Kerri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings and Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings in The Americans on FX. CRAIG BLANKENHORN/FX  The Americans.jpg
Subject: The Americans On 2013-04-08, at 3:50 PM, Yeo, Debra wrote: Kerri Russell as Elizabeth Jennings and Matthew Rhys as Philip Jennings in The Americans on FX. CRAIG BLANKENHORN/FX The Americans.jpg

DVF made it ionic, the shape makes it completely flattering. A wrap dress is great in every decade and in every way–short, long, dress up, casual, there’s just something about this silhouette that looks great on everyone. It’s a classic you need and here are some of my picks:
Wrap Dresses: DVF (on sale!), DVF, and Ann Klein

Great Jeans and a Top
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Ironically enough, high waisted jeans and tie blouses are back in style–but I think any jean rise that looks great on you and any simple blouse is a classic hit. There’s something both effortless and pulled together about the combo. Some of my faves:
Jeans:JCrew, , and MOTHER
Tops: Equipment, Anna Quan, and Zara

Read about the costume process here.

Would you wear any of these costumes? Be a spy?

I’m game!
Xo RA

Mom’s Style

I’ve been posting this on my mom’s birthday for a few years now- it’s become tradition. Today is her big day (and Mother’s Day!). My mom and I are close, and yet different. However, as I get older I realize I’m more like her than I think, and I couldn’t be more grateful. Especially now, as some of us are apart from our families, I think about how the women in my life shaped me. I spent the last year isolating with my mom- it wasn’t always easy, but I’m so grateful we did! Even though we spent the better part of the year not getting dressed up- I still learned about style from her over this past year. And yes, we’re getting dressed today! Hope whatever your relationship with moms are, today lands easy. Xo RA

InvestmentPiece: Mom's Style

Loves! It’s my Momma’s birthday! If you haven’t caught on, my mom and I are close, and I can’t begin to describe how much I love her, and how appreciative I am for all she does for me. Mom is a CPA and teaches accounting, she’s our CFO, and while that’s completely different from her creative daughter who thinks shoes are a necessity (I mean I need shoes, I occasionally want to eat); Mom’s style has influenced me and helped me become the fashionista I am today. So, what did I learn from Mom’s style? Glad you asked!

Stay True to Your Style

No matter the trend or what “you’re supposed” to do, sticking to what you love and what works for you is something to be admired–and makes you look stunning! Mom is a big fan of navy. She is known for her love of navy suits, shoes, and bags. There are years when navy is “in” and years when we’ve had to search for navy for Mom. That doesn’t matter to Mom, even when the styles she loves aren’t in she sticks to them. There’s a classic-ness in that, a commitment. That’s not to say Mom doesn’t try new things, but I’ve learned that you don’t need to be a slave to trends, that sticking to things you love is something to be commended, and when you find something that fits you–hang onto it!

Proper Undergarments Matter

Mom and I have had a lot of events recently and at everyone Mom has mentioned that she thinks I might need a slip. (Side note: I have slips, I’m not great at wearing them) Here’s the thing though: Mom may have a point. Lining, slips, proper garments: our clothes fit better when we make sure these things are taken care of. Proper fit is important (Mom is big on that too) and to ensure that the fit flows, proper undergarments help. (And let’s be honest, no one likes the look of lines!)

Invest in Your Suit
Something Mom and I agree about whole heartedly? Your suit, be it an actual suit, jeans or yoga pants, is something to invest in. Mom, being an accountant, is a fan of actual suits and made it a point to invest in good ones each year. Now that she’s in a place where she’s good on suits, Mom is having fun filling her closet with tanks, tops and blouses (both classic and trendy) to wear with her suits. However, she’s always adamant that her suits are high quality, she checks seams and linings, that it’s where she spends her money. And loves, I agree–what you wear the most should be where you invest your money.

Don’t be Afraid to Accessorize

Mom is a more conservative dresser than I am, yes. However, Mom is not too conservative for a great accessory! I can’t remember a time when Mom didn’t leave the house without a scarf, jewelry, pins, or gloves. We do a high tea occasionally, and Mom is always on point with her hats (and gloves!). The lesson? You can always be playful, and the details are always a place to have fun!

While Mom and I may have different opinions about certain fashions, but my Mom has some amazing style, and I’m so grateful she taught me all she knows!

Have some champagne to celebrate!

XO RA

Tailoring

One of the ways to get amazing fitting clothes that make you look amazing? Tailoring. Buy things that fit your widest part, then have them altered to fit every where else. Tailoring has been on my mind lately- not just because it’s a great way to have clothes that fit, but because of the post-pandemic world. No one knows exactly what the world will look like- or what we’ll be wearing. One article I read floated the idea that what we may see are clothes that are sold in more general sizes, meant to be tailored to you after you purchase them. And I have to say, I love this idea! I’m reposting my orginal thoughts on tailoring and adding in some links for what you can have tailored- or tailor yourself!

Investment Piece: logo week: Fendi pants

I’m in the process of having some pants tailored. As in, almost remade. It’s been a long process, there are times when it’s felt too long. However, every time my tailor and I get closer to the finished product, I can’t help but get excited. I also have to remind myself that working with my tailor is a process and that a great tailor is a great investment! You are getting so much more about my “new” old pants, but first, let’s chat tailoring.

One of my very first posts was centered around “great investments”, one of which I thought was a tailor.
(See the original article here) And I still hang onto that thought. If you’re investing in your closet, a great tailor is a must have! Yes, for mends like buttons, zippers, holes, and hems you might be able to do the work yourself; however, I find that a professional often does it faster and better, and ensures that the item that needs mending doesn’t spend the rest of its life on my closet floor.

But a tailor is so much more. A great tailor can remake a garment for you–nip or let out the waist, or various parts, tighten or loosen, lengthen or shorten. You look best in clothes that fit you best and a tailor can help you get there!

Investment Piece, high fashion, tailoring, purple, Mary McFadden, pleats, CA, TX
This number needed to be slightly let out in the bust–and even with the pleating, no problem for a great tailor.

Investment Piece, fashion, blogger, CA, TX, HM, floral, high fashion
This dress (seen here) was taken in at the waist, and the back slit was lengthened.

The great news about a great tailor is that they can really transform a garment into something special. Which is amazing for all those things that you try on that just need a little something done. However, tailors aren’t always miracle workers and much like any important relationship (I’m looking at you, hairdressers) communication is key. So how can you best work with your tailor? Glad you asked!

Be Realistic

If something is 2 sizes too small and has no extra fabric in it, your tailor cannot make it your size. However, there may be times when your tailor has to tell you “no”. Certain fabrics, certain cuts and drapes, they just don’t mix. What you envision may not be doable. So ask questions like “Can we do this?” “What will this look like?” “What are my options here?” A great tailor will be honest and lay out your options, and may even have some suggestions that you didn’t even think of!

Let them know YOUR Preferences
I like my waists high and nipped. I think, for my body type, it looks best. I also like my sleeves to come down to my wrists. My tailor knows me and works with me to get the looks I like. But, even when we try things on it’s on me to be vocal–I like this, I don’t like this. Your tailor can’t please you if they don’t know what you want.

Fittings. More than one Fitting

Ok, some things don’t need a fitting–much less two. But some really do. If you’re altering a garment in a major way I would suggest more than one fitting to make sure everything is perfect. And move in it–raise your arms, turn, sit down–all of it. Make sure that the fit and movement are what you want. And talk to your tailor about what you’re seeing, and ask what they’re seeing!

Most of this comes down to talking to your tailor–about likes, fit, etc. The more honest you are, and the more they are honest with you, the better fit you will get!

Here are a few articles about what things are easy to tailor (and even how to tailor some things yourself!):
Useful Links on Tailoring Your Clothes
The Power of Tailoring
Which Alterations are the Easiest
How to do Alterations
Taking Measurements for Fit
And Alerations 101

I hope these tips help! Happy Tailoring!

XO RA

Something Gingham

Investment Piece: Something Gingham
Investment Piece: Something Gingham
Investment Piece: Something gingham
Investment Piece: Something Gingham
Investment Piece: Something Gingham

It’s Spring and the one thing that’s on every list: Something Gingham! True every spring (I’m still obsessed with my gingham Jcrew heels from last year, you can ogle them here), but especially true this year. Gingham dresses, shoes, pants, tops, bags- everything is something gingham. And loves, this gingham is chic, fresh and fun!

I love the silhouette on this Zara blouse: the collar, the cut out, the sleeves. It goes great with jeans, but lends itself to a more formal look, think pencil skirt, just as as easily. And nothing has diminished my love of vintage Levi’s–s I can’t help but wear everything with them! And these heels! Last seen here, I love the laces, the esperadille look, and the ease of matching them! This outfit is perfect for a night out or a day running errands!

and loves, this is how we do something gingham. How are you rocking it?

XO RA

This top is from Zara, the jeans are vintage. I’ve linked similar items to both as well as my favorite spring gingham pieces below!
Note: this post does contain affiliate links. While that does not affect the price for you, I may earn commission on them. Thank you for your support!

#Dotted

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There’s something about polka dots that I just love-they’re playful and fun, and yet can be sophisticated. So when I found this dotted Geoffrey Beene at one of my go-to TX Vintage places I couldn’t resist it! I love the business like feel (that collar, that bow!), the pockets, the length, and the way it balances work and party. I also loved the way it felt modern; I can wear it with any shoes really, but loved the juxtaposition of the dots with my beloved Jaquemus circle/square sandals. It feels fresh and new!

And as I reemerge after the storms in TX and all that went along with them, I needed something fun! I hope you’re staying safe and warm out there!
Happy Monday! XO RA

Details:
Dress from ReVint
Shoes: Jaquemus

Non-Wedding

Investment Piece, non wedding, fashion blogger, high fashion, Valentino, Asos, travel, Megan Weaver, CA, TX
Loves, believe it or not, this amazing white dress is a wedding dress. But who says I have to wear it to a wedding? What about a non-wedding?

Investment Piece, non wedding, fashion blogger, Valentino, Gucci, train case, mink, Megan Weaver, CA, TX, high fashion
Investment Piece, fashion blogger, non wedding, mink, vintage, high fashion, Asos, Megan Weaver, CA, TX
As a woman who loves fashion but is not planning her wedding, wedding fashion can be a murky area. Wedding guest? I have ideas and dresses. Bridesmaid? House Party? I got you. Wedding dress? Not something I usually touch. But loves, let’s be clear there are wedding dresses, and then there are non-wedding wedding dresses. For multiple reasons, I won’t get into wedding dresses (unless we’re shopping for you and you want my opinion), but non-wedding dresses? If I find a dress that I love that’s white, should I not wear it? Even to a non-wedding?

Investment Piece, fashion blogger, non wedding, high fashion, Gucci, Asos, mink, vintage, Megan Weaver, CA, TX
Investment Piece, non wedding, fashion blogger, Asos, Gucci, Valentino, floral boots, Megan Weaver, high fashion, CA, TX

Confession time: there are non-traditional wedding dresses that I have loved and always been afraid to buy. But then, why waste good fashion? (Again, this is not about me running around in a Princess wedding dress). There are great white dresses out there, great train-ed dresses out there, great wedding dresses out there that don’t read wedding. And we’re big girls. So I decided not to care and got this “t-shirt” wedding dress from Asos. I just then made it non-wedding. I love it with the leather blazer and boots. And it looks just as great with a belt and wedges. I’ve found the trick if you’re going to non-wedding a “wedding dress” is to play against type. Add color and texture, don’t Princess it. But, by all means, rock it!

investment Piece, fashion blogger, non wedding, Asos, leather, Valentino, floral boots, Megan Weaver, high fashion, Ca, TX
Investment Piece, fashion blogger, non wedding, Mink, vintage, Gucci, train case, leather, vintage, high fashion, Asos, Megan Weaver, CA, TX
Investment Piece, non wedding, fashion blogger, high fashion, Valentino, floral boots, Gucci, train case, mink, vintage, leather, Asos, Megan Weaver, high fashion, CA, TX

Let’s chat about these accessories. My fave Valentino boots (seen here, here, and here) add texture and color. The leather blazer roughs up the white, and adds edge? (Ok, maybe not, but that’s what we’ll call it) And this vintage mink muff! A great find on Etsy, I love it–it keeps my hands warm, adds a touch of class, and is statement piece. Then this vintage Gucci train case! I bought it from my go-to, Vesitaire Collective and it is perfect for traveling, making statements, and feeding my Gucci love.

Investment Piece, fashion blogger, non wedding, Asos, vintage, leather, mink, Valentino, Megan Weaver, high fashion, CA, TX

I like to think that I pulled off a non-wedding look. It didn’t feel like a wedding dress, and I didn’t get asked if I was running away from a wedding. It gives me hope that I can dip my toe into “non-wedding” wedding dresses and style them (because loves, there are some that I would love to style. I would love to know–would you dare wear a non-wedding dress? Did this read wedding to you? What’s your wedding style?

Shop my picks below!

XO RA

Note: this post does contain affiliate links. While that does not affect the price for you, I may earn commission from them! Thank you for your support!

Getting in the Water

Investment Piece: Getting in the Water
Investment Piece: Getting in the Water
Investment Piece: Getting in the Water
Investment Piece: Getting in the Water
Investment Piece: Getting in the Water

Loves, in a moment of vulnerability, I have to admit, this was a hard week. I know, we’re all having hard weeks. It’s just a hard time. And what do I do when it gets tough? Buy shoes! Well, yes. But other than that, a thing I do is get in the water. There’s something about water-surfing, paddle boarding, just sitting by it, that calms me down and makes me happy. Getting in the water is one of my favorite coping mechanisms. And getting in the water in fashion? I LOVE it!!

And loves, this is why I love this job. I love the creativity of it, the thinking out of the box on how to present my fave fashion to you, and the people I work with. This dress is Clover Canyon, and as an Ocean Baby I can’t recommend them enough; their clothes are made of neoprene (always water ready) and the patterns are to die for! I love that my photographer, Katy Shayne, was nonplussed when I said I wanted to shoot this dress on a board and that I would figure it out! And so we figured it out, I got on a paddle board and we were able to get great looks from the dock (the dress is water ready, cameras not so much). Bonus-I got to be on the water and got a session in after we were done!

Another moment of vulnerability: this shoot is from over a year ago. Yet, I’ve updated it. And it rings true. This week, in August 2020 has been tough. My reaction? Get in the water. I found my self putting together a closet, stressed about what to shoot, and needing to be in the water. So, here we are. I went to the water, and I wore this dress (yet again) and things are looking up. Isn’t it funny how things can come full circle?

I’ve updated my shopping picks and hope that however your week has gone, you’re getting in the water!
XO RA

Note: this post does contain some affiliate links. While that does not affect the price for you, I may earn commission from them. Thank you for your support!

Shop my picks:

Investment Piece: Getting in the Water

Jungle Heat

Investment Piece: Jungle Heat
Investment Piece: Jungle Heat
Investment Piece: Jungle Heat
Investment Piece: Jungle Heat
Investment Piece: Fashion blogger

Loves, it’s been so hot, too hot to do anything! It feels like a jungle out there! And what to do when it feels like a jungle? Dress for jungle heat! You caught me again: this is a swim suit (well, technically a rash guard) that I’m wearing with a skirt. But it goes perfectly! This exquisite skirt (very DG) is from one of my faves, Beehive Boutique, and it’s perfect for summer! The color, the patterns, the animals–it’s very jungle chic! And I couldn’t resist pairing it with this rash guard to match the stripes.

Yes, this skirt goes great with white tees (and yellow, black, etc), button downs, and denim shirts. This rash guard goes with any bikini and is perfect for your next water sport adventure. But, if it’s jungle heat outside, shouldn’t we be prepared at all times to get in the pool or ocean? Is there anything else to do when it’s this hot?

Hope your weekend is wonderful–and cool!

Shop my picks below! XO RA

Note: this post does contain affiliate links. While that does not affect the price for you, I may earn commission from them! Thank you for your support!

Investment Piece: Jungle Heat