Friday, May 23, 2014

A Chill In The Air




American Eagle Outfitters Coat
J.Crew Cardigan and Silk Blouse (thrifted)
Silver Necklace - Fair Vendor
Leather Bag (thrifted)
Seven For All Mankind Jeans (consignment)
Leather Cowboy Ankle Boots (thrifted)

A few weeks ago I took in a bunch of my nicer jeans that I don't wear to the consignment store and ending up swapping them out for two other pairs.  The funny part is that both pair are Seven For All Mankind, a brand I've been  really dismissive about because their jeans always have fit me terribly but in this case, they probably some of the best fitting jeans I have now.  This pair is one of their skinny cuts and they're pretty much awesome - no bagging out of the knees, they keep their shapes and they're so comfy to wear that I actually forget I'm wearing them.   I don't say this about many things but I would totally pay full price for these, they are that easy and perfect. (I suppose in pictures it's hard to see the difference between the American Eagle black jeans and these but you can really see it in real life, the fabric is so nice, it's stiff but still stretchy and thick with the AE jeans feel very thin, I've almost worn a hole in one pair already.)

I'm a little bummed with how chilly it's been this week, it's suppose to warm way up but I'm ready for the eighty degrees.  35 is making me sad.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Evening Daze






Kimono from Fred Meyers
Yellow is Gold Silk Dress (thrifted)
H&M Leather Boots c/o H&M

We finally have running water again!  Let me tell you, after half a winter of no water it's a serious luxury to turn on the tap and have water come out. And hot showers!  Ooooh, I missed those!  Bull diving isn't bad but it's nothing on a nice, long, hot shower.   Not to mention that it's suddenly a lot more fun doing dishes and not quite the chore it was before with heating up water and everything.
Because the underground pipe between our house and the well house had frozen up and then broken (it's hadn't been buried deep enough of insulated by the previous owner) the septic ended up freezing as well and while we fixed the septic last week the ground just finally thawed out enough for us to start digging down this week.  It was a lot of work but hopefully now next winter it won't freeze up again.  The good thing is that Ev and I are starting to get pretty decent at this whole plumbing thing but now we need to go through and fix some of the wiring so it's a never ending chore. (A happy one though, it's cool to be able to fix stuff around our own house.)

 So running water - most awesome thing ever.  It totally beats out cheesecake.



Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Evening Breeze





Embelished Sheer Jacket (thrifted)
White Maxi (thrifted)
Payless Heels
Woven Bag (thrifted)
Old Navy Hat

I wore this to a birthday party and managed to get no stains on it.   And uh, it's another white maxi.  Those white maxi dresses, they're almost as dangerous as the kimonos, I see one and it's like catnip. (Although I do not usually pull them off the rack and roll around on them in a drug induced stupor - cute with kitties, not so much with people.)

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

It's Sparkly







French Connection Jacket (Saks off 5th)
American Eagle Outfitters Blouse
Express Cutoffs (thrifted)
Woven Bag (thrifted)
H&M Leather Boots c/o H&M

This is the jacket I talked about a few posts back.  I really fell for it last summer, it's embroidered, embellished, and has tiny mirrors woven in - it's about the perfect jacket.  It sold out really fast though and until last month, I hadn't had any luck finding it on ebay.  I did find a few finally but I didn't really want to pay what the sellers were asking and found a far cheaper price at Saks off 5th after goggling the jacket yet again.   I'm just going to say it, I luuuv this jacket, I've worn it almost every day since it arrived.  I haven't had any problems with anything falling off it or threads coming loose so I'm feeling pretty good about the longevity of it.

On a unrelated note, after looking through that site I now see why so many people could afford those crazy expensive leather pants last fall, they weren't really paying $900 plus, they were buying them here for a fraction of the price.  I've talked about Last Call a little bit and I do like them for lower prices but whoa, I was really impressed with the Saks off 5th site, the shipping was really reasonable and fast and I think they've got a nicer selection of garments. (Biased because there's some good Joie and rag&bone selections there and I really like both of those brands.)  They do a lot of sales with extra off, which I took advantage of when I bought this jacket.   I'm sure everyone else knows about this site because I'm usually the last on a bandwagon but I always like being able to find nicer items for lower prices than I can find on ebay sometimes.

Sorry about the lack of decent full pictures, I'm wearing just black, flat ankle boots so it's not a huge loss.  I just kinda forgot how to take pictures with this last month off.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Summer Time Lovin'







Nayette Layfore Top (thrifted)
Elizabeth and James Silk Skirt (ebay)
American Eagle Outfitters Belt
Woven Bag (thrifted)
Rag & Bone Harrow Boots (ebay)

It's so nice not to have to wear coats all the time although I'm a little bummed that as soon as I got my camera back, our weather of 70 plus degree temps dropped down 40-50 degrees.  That 70 degrees, man, it made me a wimp.

I bought this skirt just because of the beautiful pattern,  it just really appeals to me.  After watching this skirt on Last Call all last year, I ended up getting lucky and finding it on ebay, brand new, for $29.99 with free shipping. (I just checked and now it's going for $20-$25 which is way down from the retail price of over $250.  Ebay for the win!)   I wish they hadn't designed it with a drop waist because I think those can look a little odd on a maxi skirt but the pattern is so pretty in real life and it's really well made, fully lined and moves so nicely.  It's fun to finally wear it during the summer, I was getting pretty sick of boots and sweaters.

Of course I say that and then go and wear some ankle boots.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

The Last Hanger-ons



Leather Jacket (thrifted)
Joie Silk Blouse (ebay)
Paige Denim (thrifted)
Seychelles Boots
American Eagle Outfitters Belt and Bag

I've been trying to get better about wear denim styles other than my usual skinny-leg jeans, but I don't like always having to wear really high heels to make up for the extra length.   (But if I didn't, the hems would drag and I'd look even shorter - the horror!)  This is the last of the pictures I'd had saved on the memory card before my camera died a brutal death but I'm getting it back tomorrow, yay!  I should also be able to get on the internet tomorrow since I'll be in town as well so I'll try to catch up with everyone, Im sorry about so much radio silence.

Staying On Track

So last year sorta close to this time I wrote up a list of items I'd like to add to my closet.  I don't do "wish lists" because they bother me but I do enjoy seeing what other people have really thought about and are planning to add to their closets.  I want to be a better consumers and that in part means "don't buy so much JUNK."  I'm not wild about clothes being an investment purchase because they do wear out - chances are I won't have some of this stuff in eighty or so years. (Although I do want to be buried in my French Connection jacket,  end of story.) But I do believe in buying garments that will last through two or so washes and that are hopefully made through socially responsible brands.  So listing what I'd like to buy does feel pretty frivolous and materialistic but by making a list and sticking too it, I'm still buying far, far less.

I didn't do great on staying on track last year, I go distracted halfway through and went back to THRIFT-ALL-THE-STUFF but this year I'm going to work harder at it.  I feel good about having a  uniform and because my work is mostly labor, I only need a few pairs of throw away jeans and shirts and I can spend the rest off my budget on my off duty clothes.  (Because I do change  clothes when I get home from work, who enjoys spending the rest of their day in paint and pony poop covered sweaty clothes?)


Last Year's List

Rag & Bone Fedora - This one is still on my list.  I really like the look of it but I haven't started saving up for it yet. I did find a Minnetonka  hat that was similar and that has a buffalo nickle trim that is so Jeremy Irons in Appaloosa-ish that I may give in and get it instead.

Paige "Wild Heart" Horse print Skinny Jeans (Returned) -  I did order these  and ended up sending them back.  The rise was awkward on me and while I really do like the print, these jeans didn't fit very well into my closet and I've been trying to avoid that.

Jeffery Campbell Boots-Heels - I ordered these finally!  I fell in love with these A.D heels but the price for them was crazy, like $900  plus.  That's way out of my comfort-zone so I searched for a look-a-like and these Jeffery Campbells were a spitting image. (oh, the culture of knocks offs and here I am supporting it. Blah.)  Every other similar looking shoes I've seen had a very thin, stiletto type heel and part of what attracted me to the original was the thicker heel.  When I finally decided to order these,  they were out of stock and I ended up waiting another three months for them to  come back.  I'm so happy I did though, you wouldn't think it to look at them  but these shoes are really comfortable!  You can adjust the laces so the rivets don't dig into your toes and the thicker heel makes them really easy to Walk around in all day.

Rag and Bone "Harrow" Boots - I did find these on ebay for a really good price and I love them.  The only downfall is that I didn't wear them very much this winter, I was worried about wreaking them in the snow and salt and I feel a little foolish for buying something I'm scared to wear part of the year.  I think I could have bought the Sole Society version except that the Rag and Bone version is so cushiony on the inside.

New stuff on the List


French Connection "Sable" Jacket - This should have been on the last list except that it had sold out by that point and I couldn't even find it on ebay.   I'd given up on this jacket and bought a sort-a-similar jacket from AE that I didn't really love and that didn't fit so well(again - sigh) and was just disappointed.  Then a month ago I found it on ebay,was going to buy it and then ended up finding it on Saks off 5th for way less!  It was 72% off plus extra discount and free shipping and I've worn it almost every day since it arrived.  It fits into my wardrobe really well, I've  wearing mostly black jeans, ankle boots and sort or of blouse and this just worked perfectly.

Isn't this jacket beautiful?  I'm not crazy about the short but the jacket it's self is spectacular and I've really been happy that I found it.














Black Leather Pants - I ordered some Current/Elliot leather pants off ebay for really cheap, I didn't have a lot of familiarity with that brand and how they fit so I went up a size just int case. AND THEY ARE SO SMALL.  I couldn't return them and I don't think I can resell them - part of the reason I got them so cheap was because they have a small patch that isn't visible but I think it's something most people wouldn't like.  They've been fitting a little better  I' going to just keep working out and see if maybe I can get them to fit nicely by fall  before giving up, trying to get a little money back and buying the Rag and Bone version. (Which I wish I had.  I love my red leather pair, they fit so nicely and I think that brand is designed a little more towards my shape than Current/Elliot is.)  I did notice that the ones on Saks off 5th go on sale for really cheap so I might wait for a sale but this is a wait-until-fall kinda thing.

Everlane Silk Blouse - I like the ones I have and I've pared them down quite a bit but  I've noticed I don't have much by way of solid colored ones.  I'd really like a white silk blouse and I've heard good things about theirs.  (The prices aren't painful either.)

Joie Wide Leg Silk Pants - I see these off and on on ebay and I love how they look.  The
track pant/jogger/whatever-it's-called loose pants that are so popular now are cute but I have to face the music and accept that they just don't look that great on me.  A high rise, wide leg silk trouser?  On paper that sounds pretty good for my figure.  These aren't a "need" (well, nothing on this list is a "need") but I do really like them.

Rag and Bone Leather Shorts - This seems silly, I know.  I've thought about these for almost a year and I find them on a decent price fairly often.  I hate to pay too much for something that has such a short seasonal life but PRETTY.

Rag and Bone Fishermen's Sweater - This list has a disturbing amount of Rag and Bone but I've been so happy with everything I've bought so far and it all seems to be nicely made. (I know most of the clothes were made in the US for a while but it seems like now not so much.)  I cleaned out my sweater shelf this past month, being from Alaska you would assume I'd have some really nice sweater but nope, I suck at buying sweaters.  I have a red L.L.Bean sweater and a Columbia turtleneck I really like but otherwise, it's a wasteland of waste.  This summer I going to carefully buy a few sweaters I really like that are versatile within my wardrobe and stick at that.  This sweater in particular is gorgeous with beautiful structure and it looks warms. (Bonus - it's white!  Totally fits into that whole versatile wardrobe thing.)

Joie Lace Blouse in White- I have one lace blouse I've gotten a lot of wear out of but being a cheap one, it doesn't have a lot of life left in it.  This blouse it beautifully made and is full lace, not that whole the-front-is-lace-back-is-solid garbage that seems to be popular.

Free People Journey Slip - Okay, this one is one the list just because it's a lust item.  I don't like to use words like that about clothes but this slip, I lust for it.   It's again more of a want than a need or a really serious wardrobe addition but it's beautiful.  (I'm just trying to justify it at this moment.)

Part of having this list is too keep me on track of what I do actually want in my closet and part of being a better consumer is also consuming less.  That means less thrifting,  less buying online or in stores, less ebay, less everything.  I get really distracted without a list and tend of fall off the wagon so I'm going to really keep track of myself this time. I think there's about eight items I really want and if I stick to it, eight items a year isn't that bad.  Some of the stuff is more expensive but it's all stuff I've thought about for a while and really like and saving up for it will make it more special.  Everything works within my closet and with each other, I've been wearing more black/white with reds and blues thrown in so the color palette is cohesive as well.

One thing I'm really happy that was never on my list? Printed leggings!  That's been one bloggy
trend that I've seen in the real world and it is not good.  Even if you're crazy skinny, these just look terrible.  (It might not help that every keeps wearing them as pants.  LEGGINGS ARE NOT PANTS.)  Printed pants can look cute if they're not neon but the printed leggings are just all kinds of fug.  I think I hate them even more than those horrible bedazzled  MissMe jeans that are suddenly everywhere.  Why Fairbanks, why?!  We're better than that!



Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Breakup Season





Kimono
American Eagle Outfitters Tee
Aeropostale Overalls
Leather Boots (thrifted)
Leather Bag (thrifted)

Breakup season was pretty icky, there was a ton of yard work to be done this spring but finally the piles of snow have finally melted and everything's almost dried out.  Now that the nights are  above freezing I' m going to start transplanting my starts out to the garden.  Last year was my first year of really gardening on my own and it ended up being something I really enjoyed. I like the evening ritual of watering and weeding, it was very relaxing and peaceful and while my garden was not very fruitful thanks to the crazy weather last spring/summer, it was fun.  I'm doing three rows of potatoes this year because they're easy and we eat a lot of them and I think I'm going to do a whole bed of just herbs.  I love Dill and Cilantro and it's really lovely to have fresh Chives to cook with.  I'm also growing some new Rhubarb plants, I had a few last year and with how much my family eats it, three plants was not enough.  (I usually make a 9x12 pan of Rhubarb Meringue and Ev will eat half of it and  then my brothers end up eating the other half - all in one night.  I end up making a lot of it.)

We've also being working of fixing the plumbing and the septic issues that arose from the main water pipe not being buried deeply enough.  I won't talk about the septic because nobody wants to read about that on a style blog.  We finally got my car running again - the fuel line  had broken and wouldn't you know, Ford had discontinued the fuel lines for the year our car  is.  So we've been trying to find Expeditions that were out for scrap and finally found  one this past week.  At least now I know how to change out a fuel line! Along with  knowing how to change break pads, batteries, alternators and spark plugs, that means I only have 99% left to learn about cars!  Other than that, it's mostly just been Gunnar getting ready to finish up his first school year, Izzy getting ready to go to school next fall and getting ready for summer. The school they attend is pretty small and over the course of the year the teachers and everyone gotten to know Izzy just from her coming with me to pick up Gunnar and the school functions.  She feels pretty comfortable about going next year so she'll have it a lot easier than Gunnar did. (Poor guy, he was so shy at the beginning of the school year and now he's come so far and has made so many friends this past year, it really makes me happy to see all of the success he's had and how confident he's grown as a result.)  

We've had quite the amount of wildlife out at the property as well, our pond is home to six geese and a handful of ducks as well as some new members, a pair of muskrats!  It's been really exciting seeing them, they built their den on the other side of the pond where the bank is falling in a little and we've all been enjoying watching them and seeing how playful they are.  We've also seen the little fox that has a den somewhere on the forty acres behind us and a bunch of rabbits.  (I love rabbits!  The ponies are coming to live out on the property soon but it would be really nice to have some bunnies as well, I've been trying to talk Ev into them.)   There's been so many cows and calves(moose, not cow-cows.) this year as well, we've counted four new pairs so far this summer.  The other night I got woken up at 3 by something making a ton of noise in the pond and when I went out on the porch, there was a cow and calf twelve feet away from me, just having a great time playing around in the pond.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Superman

A little while ago my godfather passed away. I realized that godfather doesn't sound like maybe that important of role in a person's life but he was one of the most important, amazing person in my life.  My grandfathers all passed away long before I was born, my mom's dad due to cancer and my dad's father was killed in a machinery accident on the North Slope when my dad was six so I'd never had that grandfather figure in my life.  We moved to Seward when I was five  and being the chatty little kid I was, I started talking almost instantly to the older gentleman across the alley.  He'd just retired that year and came out everyday to garden and I'd stand in the alley and just talk, talk, talk to him through the fence.  Then one day my bunny (The Aunt Shirley who escaped the dogs when Uncle Tom did not) got loose from her bunny pen and was having a great time running around and destroying the garden.    The older gentlemen came over with his dip-net and after a lot of swinging about, captured my bunny.  She ended up escaping a lot that summer and it wasn't until 17 years later that I admitted that my brothers and I kept letting her loose because it was so much fun to watch him try to catch her with the dip-net.  (He just laughed and said he thought it was strange that the bunny was able to escape almost everyday.)

My parents became clothes friends with him and his wife and they were like grandparent to my brothers and I.  They were amazing people who opened their hearts and their home to us. We had every Thanksgiving with them and the best days were always the days when we'd pile into the car with our bikes, drive to town and ride along the beach with Duane and Sanna.  They were so important and special to us that my little sister was named after my godmother, Sanna and I named my son after him.

Even though he was retired he still was physically very strong, he hauled and split his own wood, was a subsistence hunter before that was a "thing" climbed mountains and skied.  He was a veteran of WW11 and had lied about his age to get in in order to be with his younger cousin who'd also lied about his age  in order to enlist. (He was pretty sure his 13 year old cousin would have gotten killed with out his watching over him.)  He was proud of having served but never talk about his experiences aside from once, I know he was always very worried about another draft being reinstated and my brothers having to served.  One of the sweetest thing I remember about him was that after every meal my godmother made, he would always do the dishes, every single time.  It was just one of those incredibly sweet moments to witness.  He was someone who had such a kind heart and patience, he was someone who I thought knew everything ion the world but was never a braggart.    I'm sure he had faults but I never saw any of them, to me he was like my dad, he was Superman.  And there's nothing I could ever say that would truly reflect the amazing man he was.

Back In The Saddle





Hat c/o H&M
Icing Vest (christmas gift)
Free People Dress
DV Dolce Vite Heels
Leather Bag (thrifted)

These pictures were taken about a month ago, back during Easter Ev broke my camera.  He was taking pictures of the kids and stumbled, dropping the camera.  I had a crazy bitch moment in my head and then tried to chill out and be okay about it before I manged to say anything evil. Accidents happen and stuff like a camera getting broken really isn't worth losing your  cookies or acting like a complete jerk to your spouse who already feels pretty bad. Water under the bridge or something like that, a camera just isn't that important.

It ended up unfortunately being a pretty costly repair but I'm suppose to get it back on Friday and I'm so excited, I missed it! I did try to take picture with a spare digital but ugh, they were awful.  I know it's the photographer and not the camera that makes the pictures so I suppose that means I have a LONG way to go but I've gotten so use to being able to be in control of all the settings that only being able to adjust a few really screwed with me.  I ended up not taking pictures for almost a month and while that's been nice for recharging, I missed my camera.  (And now the snow is gone and everything is pretty so you know, it's fun taking pictures again.)

The good thing about not taking pictures for a month made me realize my closet is what I actually enjoy wearing, that I don't get dressed up just for the blog.  I still wore my pretty dresses (I've worn this one a few times since then because it's so beautiful in person) and I still wore a lot of black jeans although I've been able to switch to summer shoes now that all of that snow has finally melted.  It makes me happy that my closet is finally getting streamlined, it's been a work in progress for the better part of a year and there's still a little ways to go. (I'm a slow learner I guess.)