30 September 2009 – Fashion Copycat

September 30th, 2009 § 11 comments §

30 September 2009 – Fashion Copycat, originally uploaded by academichic.


All remixed:

  • Blue scarf – TJMaxx
  • Pale pink top – TJMaxx
  • Purple cardi – H&M
  • Black capris – Younique Jeans, via TJMaxx
  • Knee socks – J.Crew
  • Black boots – Banana Republic
  • Tan bag – Etienne Aigner


This outfit was inspired by an image in Lucky that I bookmarked during my recent flight to Europe. It struck me as very Euro chic with the black skinny jeans and the oversized scarf. So I gave it a try using my own wardrobe and paired a purple cardi (instead of a coat) with my own blue pashmina scarf and my version of black skinny jeans.

Inspiration picture, originally uploaded by academichic.

I’m actually wearing a pair of black jean capris, which I brought with me for this very purpose; I knew they could be transformed into long-seeming skinny jeans by tucking them into knee high socks and wearing them with boots. Their slim fit and 3/4 length means they don’t bunch inside the boot and with the aid of a knee sock, they’re now warm and long enough to be winter ready. (I did tuck down the one knee sock peaking out here after seeing the picture, since the knee sock is only supposed to be providing ‘behind the scenes’ service here).

I added my tan and brown Etienne Aigner bag, which is similar enough to the satchel worn by the girl in the picture in that its worn-in and aged – a welcomed hand-me-down from my mom. I actually had fun trying to recreate a look that appealed to me with as much accuracy as possible.  If you’re reading this and want to play along, peruse a favorite magazine and try this challenge yourself this week or next. (And if you happen to document it, send us your inspiration picture along with your version of it for our Monthly Roundtable!) S.

Category: Beltless, Color Combinations, Lab Friendly, Layers Upon Layers, Our Best Flatware, Pants Please, Research Casual
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Spotlight On: Blog Love

September 30th, 2009 § 8 comments §

I’m always discovering new blogs I love and bookmark. While most of these can be found in our ever-growing blogroll, I thought I’d share some recent discoveries with you in a post of their own.

Picture 3

One of my daily reads is Jentine’s My Edit. Not only does this girl have massive style and a creative eye for unique combinations, she also cracks me up with her humorous and often sarcastic writing style. While some style blogs pull me in with their wonderful pictures, this one keeps me going back for the witty writing as well as the gorgeous outfits.

Picture 1

Another recent discovery is Jen Loves Kev. Jen, a fellow teacher, collects smart and cute teaching outfits in her Teaching Style File (similar to our endeavor here). And I’m also in love with her home and her unabashed use of color – brilliant!

Picture 4

And lastly, I just want to direct your attention to a great post by writer and fellow style-blogger Jane, formerly of Work That Wardrobe, and now blogging over at The Small Fabric of My Life. You may already be well familiar with Jane’s one year of no shopping project, which she documented in the first of the two blogs mentioned above. Her local paper, The Liverpool Echo, featured an article in which Jane sums up her feelings about this year-long undertaking and it’s most definitely worth a read.

What are some of your daily must-reads and which blogs would you honor with a dose of Blog Love? S.

Category: Spotlight Series, Uncategorized

29 September 2009

September 29th, 2009 § 11 comments §

29 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.


  • Gray jeans: thrifted, skinnied by me
  • Cardi: Marshalls
  • Teal nursing tank: Old Navy
  • Wedges: thrifted

End Notes:

Ohhh, ankle length pants. So fraught. And yet, weirdly, so tempting for me. While preggers, no less.

While trying to come to terms with the fact that I really, really, REALLY wanted to wear these newly skinnied, thrifted jeans as ankle-length pants, I turned to the always helpful Angie at You Look Fab for enlightenment. Re-reading that post on The Horror of Ankle Length Pants, I did note that a special dispensation is granted to skinny pants, particularly if worn with heels. And I’m all about taking advantage of special dispensations.

At the beginning of a new fashion season, it’s worth looking again at relatively recent posts by both Angie and Sal (of Already Pretty) on taking “figure flattery guidelines” with a grain of salt. I like these skinny ankle-length jeans on me. I can’t honestly tell you that they are the most “flattering” pants that I own, nor can I rave that my legs look so long in them. But for whatever reason, this appeals to me on some aesthetic level and I’m ready to rock it.

Is there a figure-flattery “don’t” that you’ve grown attached to? Or a style “rule” that you’re planning to defy this fall?

29 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Office Hours, Pants Please, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Research Casual
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29 September 2009

September 29th, 2009 § 7 comments §

29 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
  • Olive Green Blazer – J Crew
  • Maroon 3/4 Sleeve Tee – Old Navy, remixed
  • Denim Pencil Skirt – Gap, endlessly remixed
  • Brown Wedges – Kenneth Cole Reaction, via DSW, endlessly remixed
  • Purple Scarf – Blue Onion Marketplace
  • Earrings – Gift from E., remixed many times
The weather is beautiful!  Some of you have warned me not to wish cold weather here too soon, but I love the cool weather because I love corduroy, blazers, scarfs, boots and, of course, layers!

I am so excited to finally have the opportunity to wear this fabulous new scarf from Blue Onion Marketplace.  The color is perfect and the texture and shine make it different from any of my other scarves.   I think I will be getting a lot of wear out of this little piece.

New Purple Scarf, originally uploaded by academichic.
Just as S. did yesterday with the fabulous etsy shop Vintage Threadz, I have to take a minute to gush over the great online boutique Blue Onion Marketplace.  The three of us are lucky enough to have some lovely items from this little gem of a shop, including the Dulken & Derrick vintage flowers, which we have used to decorate bags and clutches, and to create belts, this purple ripple scarf and S.’s orange version, and the wonder wrap S. sported last week.  E. and I have wonder wraps too that we will be pulling out soon, now that the weather has cooled off, and we all have a few more flowers to play with.

We will also be doing our first Academichic giveaway which will be generously sponsored by Blue Onion Marketplace, so be sure to check back soon for that!    A.

Earrings, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Color Combinations, Layers Upon Layers, Office Hours, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue
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29 September 2009 – Two Dresses in Brasov

September 28th, 2009 § 16 comments §

29 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.


All remixed:

Gray jersey dress – Target
Khaki shirt dress – Target
Yellow belt – J.Crew
Gray wedges – Report
Tan bag – Etienne Aigner
Beads – thrifted


I’m relatively new to this whole dress layering thing, but I’m catching on fast. Layering dresses is a great way to add warmth, length, or to simply remix your wardrobe in yet another creative way that makes you feel like you have far more clothes than you actually do.

Last Friday, I layered these two dresses for reasons One and Three named above. I joined my mom for a quick trip to Brasov, another near-by city that rocks, for her meeting with an old friend for coffee. Brasov has a very different feel (and look) from Sibiu and even the style on the streets seems more edgy and fashion-forward. I love spending a good hour sitting at a cafe in the main square watching people walk by and taking note of their outfits. I have a feeling that my own style will invariably change the longer I’m in Europe and under the influence of my surroundings here, and I will leave it up to you to discern the differences.

For now, while I may not have Sartorialist-like photos of the people of Brasov to share with you, I will leave you with a few shots of the city instead.  S.

Category: Dresses for Day, Layers Upon Layers, Reaching New Heights, Sabbatical, Teaching Outfits
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27 September 2009

September 28th, 2009 § 10 comments §

27 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
  • Purple Tee – H & M
  • Brown Cami – Old Navy
  • Skirt – Old Navy
  • Belt – BR Outlet
  • Sandals – Forever 21
Saturday’s weather didn’t last long and it was back to almost 80 degrees here yesterday.  I didn’t mind wearing sandals but I just couldn’t wear a tank top or summer skirt again.  This lightweight cotton skirt in Fall colors seemed like a good compromise.   I have always worn this skirt with either a shade of teal (to pick up the flowers), brown, or white.   But, inspired by the more daring color play of both E. and S. with their floral skirts, I chose this bright purple and love the result.  It think, combined with the thick leather belt, the color combination gives this extremely casual and inexpensive skirt a more sophisticated look and makes it all a little more autumnal.

My weather widget promises a cool, sunny week ahead so watch for corduroy and scarves coming soon!

Category: Color Combinations, Our Best Flatware, Skirting the Issue, Weekend Wear
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28 September 2009 – Flowery

September 27th, 2009 § 8 comments §

28 September 2009 – Flowery, originally uploaded by academichic.



This is a relatively simple outfit and what I was wearing this past Sunday when a good friend, who happened to be in town for the day, called to see if I wanted to meet him for coffee. Although my outfit wasn’t all that exciting, I figured it was nothing a good brooch couldn’t fix. Or two, for that matter.

Going for a flower motif, I added this beautiful turquoise and pearl vintage brooch to my neckline, which provided the perfect pop of color against the dark purple tank-worn-as-vest. I found this little vintage gem at Vintage Threadz on Etsy and was delighted to add it to my ever growing brooch collection (isn’t that so little old lady of me?)

Vintage Threadz is where E. found her dainty leaf brooch, and where I’m currently obsessing over these pretty vintage flower earrings or these really cool green and gold 80s earrings. Thank God I’m no longer in the US, because the temptation to order these would be all the more difficult to resist. But if you’re in the market for unique vintage finds, check out this Etsy seller for some really great prices!

Anyway, I decided one flower brooch just wasn’t enough, so I added another larger D&D fabric flower to my clutch, stealing A.’s awesome idea from a little while ago. All flowered-out, I was ready to go.

What are your favorite accessories for sprucing up an otherwise ho-hum outfit? How do you add intrigue on your way out the door if you feel like your ensemble is somewhat lacking? Do share your style secrets! S.

28 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, It's in the Bag, Layers Upon Layers, Pants Please, Reaching New Heights, Research Casual, Weekend Wear
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26 September 2009

September 27th, 2009 § 11 comments §

26 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
  • Cardigan – Gap
  • Shorts – New York & Co
  • White Tee – H & M
  • Wedges – Gap Outlet
  • Headband – Limited


Yesterday, we got a small taste of Fall here at Academichic Central.  In the morning it was cool and sunny – perfect weather for meeting a friend for an outdoor coffee and bagel.  After breakfast, I headed to one of my favorite stores, Home Depot, where I perused the lumber and hardware isles and flipped through paint swatches dreaming up large-scale home renovation projects,  before settling on a few mums for the front porch. I managed to get stuck in a downpour on my way home, but eventually the sun came back out and I placed my new mums and enjoyed another warm drink on the front porch.

One of my favorite things about fall weather is the layering and mixing of items from the summer and winter wardrobe. I loved being able to wear these shorts (with their autumnal color palette) with a cozy cotton sweater.

I know this weather likely isn’t here to stay but it was nice weekend treat!  A.

Pattern Mixing, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Layers Upon Layers, Mixing Patterns, Research Casual, The Short of It, Weekend Wear
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Reader Question: Oktoberfest Attire

September 26th, 2009 § 12 comments §

Prost! Maifest 2005, originally uploaded by academichic.

I have received several reader questions about whether I would be attending Oktoberfest in Munich upon my arrival. One particular reader, well acquainted with German culture, noted:

My lasting impression of Oktoberfest, beyond the Gemütlichkeit, was how native Germans wore traditional Bavarian costumes — and it was the tourists who stuck out in their plainclothes. Getting off the U-Bahn at Theresienwiese and seeing a throng of people in lederhosen and dirndls tickled me to no end. And it was people of all ages, from little kids to teens to grannies!

It is true that one way to pass for a native at festivals such as Oktoberfest or Maifest is to wear the traditional dress of a Dirndl or Lederhose. Bavarians and Austrians in particular seem to celebrate their regional identities and their heritage by sporting Tracht for special occasions (more so than northern Germans). But unfortunately, If I do make it to Oktoberfest before it ends, I will not be sporting my Salzburger Dirndl because it was far to heavy and bulky of an item to make my very strict packing cut.

Maifest 2005, originally uploaded by academichic.

I do own a Dirndl, as many a fanatic German studies major does, purchased at a second hand store in Salzburg while I was studying abroad in Austria. Original Tracht is very pricey and purchasing it second hand is one way to get an authentic Dirndl or Lederhose without breaking the bank. I love my Dirndl and have worn it to several festivities in Austria and for several more Halloweens in the US.

Austrian Tracht, originally uploaded by academichic.

As a languages scholar, I am irresistibly drawn into the culture whose language I am studying. It is impossible to separate language from the geographical and historical culture of a given area. Traditional dress used to be the way people distinguished their regional and class identities; these garments are intricately woven (text)iles representing the communities and places of their origin. I love my Salzburger Dirndl because it represents a place and culture I have come to fondly know and appreciate since my two year sojourn there.

Similarly, I have a Romanian folk dress that is representative of the Transylvania area of the country, which is where I grew up. Pictures of my grandparents as children show them wearing the traditional dress as their daily outfits, as children of farmers often did. While members of German departments tend to be (understandably) weary of the ubiquitous Lederhose-wearing beer-slinging caricature, I appreciate the actual wearing of Tracht for its symbolic and celebratory function that aims to commemorate a given place and people in text as well as in textile. S.

Romanian Traditional Dress, originally uploaded by academichic.

PS: You can also check out the lovely Vera from Deep in Vogue sporting a traditional Bulgarian folk dress in a recent post of hers here. Do you own a traditional folk dress? If so, we’d love to see it and feature it in our Monthly Roundtable!

Category: Dresses for Day, Layers Upon Layers, Night Without Grading, Q&A, Sabbatical, Weekend Wear

25 September 2009

September 25th, 2009 § 7 comments §

25 September 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.


  • Yellow cardi: Ann Taylor Outlet
  • Belt: Target
  • Gray bermudas: thrifted, chopped by me
  • Brown wedges: thrifted
  • Leaf pendant: Polli, gift from my husband

End Notes:

Oh yes. It’s more grellow.

Maybe it’s because we’re still waiting for fall to really arrive, but I have recently developed a full-blown obsession with jewelry inspired by leaves and trees. I love this Polli leaf pendant that my husband gave me as a Mother’s Day gift, but now I’m craving more.

Polli Leaf Necklace, originally uploaded by academichic.

I wonder if the little jewelry and stationary boutique down the street carries these Polli designs I’m currently drooling over: the “Lady Beetle Necklace” or the simple “Succulents” earrings.

Or if I can ever decide which one of these Etsy sellers’ designs I want to make my own:

Necklace 1

The minimalist Silky Catkins from District Thirty?

Necklace 2

The Bare Necklace from BeauandStella?

Necklace 3

This really breathtaking Japanese Maple pendant from Lauralidesigns?

Necklace 4

Or this photo-on-glass pendant of birds in trees from Photoglassworks?

Do you find your accessories to be seasonally inspired? In motif? In material? In color? And, just so we’re clear here, I’m not talking about pumpkin brooches and Santa Clause necklaces.

Category: Color Combinations, Office Hours, Reaching New Heights, Teaching Outfits, The Short of It