31 December 2009 – Happy New Year!

December 31st, 2009 § 16 comments §

31 December 2009 – Happy New Year!, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:
All remixed except boots:

  • Bolero – gift from Santa in Romania
  • Black tank – Limited, thrifted
  • Skinnies – Celebrity Pink, thrifted
  • Boots – thrifted in Romania for $4

Endnotes:

Happy New Year’s, everyone! I hope that where ever the strike of midnight finds you tonight, you are having a wonderful time with your loved ones. Here’s to 2010 being a good one! *toast*

I have no special plans for going out tonight and therefor am dressed more for comfort than for glamour. I plan on enjoying the evening at home and then meeting my husband for a Skype date and virtual champagne toast at midnight. Usually I am a big fan of going out on New Year’s Eve because it provides the perfect excuse to don one’s most outrageously sparkly, shimmery, and otherwise extravagant clothing. Will you be donning something fabulous like that tonight? What are your plans for this evening?

Bolero detail, originally uploaded by academichic.
Boots, originally uploaded by academichic.

I also just wanted to say thank you to all of you who read our site for your continued support and input over this past year, your comments and feedback have made this project so worth it! See you all in 2010! S.

Happy New Year!, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Night Without Grading, Pants Please, Reaching New Heights

29 December 2009

December 30th, 2009 § 12 comments §

29 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:
Inside:
  • Purple Cardigan – Gap Outlet
  • Grey Tee- Banana Republic
  • Brown Belt – Gap
  • Scarf – BR Outlet
  • Jeans – Banana Republic
  • Wellies – Banana Republic
Outside (below):
  • Coat – Old Navy
  • Hat – Gap Outlet
  • Bag – Urban Outfitters
Endnotes:
Two of my favorite post-Christmas activities are shopping and museum-going.  While I do both of these things fairly regularly during the rest of the year, the post-Christmas experience is always my favorite.  I’ll write more about shopping in a later post this week, so on to museums.
29 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
Yesterday I visited one of my favorite art museums – the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. I like visiting museums during holiday break for several reasons: I’m usually going to old favorites (ones I visit once a year), I get to take my family members on a guided tour, there are always more curious children there than usual, I get to enjoy the experience and not feel like I need to take notes!
29 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
So, while E. was enjoying unseasonably-cool weather at the Rothko Chapel, I was enjoying seasonably- normal freezing weather in Minneapolis in my new coat and hat (post-holiday shopping finds).
What’s your favorite post-Christmas activity?  (I also love to play board games, see movies, go sledding and ice skating, and play with my nieces and nephews). A.
29 December 2009 – Outside, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Color Combinations, Layers Upon Layers, Night Without Grading, Our Best Flatware, Pants Please, Research Casual, Weekend Wear
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29 December 2009 – The Beauty of Borrowing

December 29th, 2009 § 9 comments §

29 December 2009 – The Beauty of Borrowing, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:

  • Ruffled coat: Testimony, borrowed from MIL
  • Ombre scarf: Chinatown
  • Black crop pants: Old Navy
  • Gray cardigan: Marshalls
  • Belt: Gap Outlet
  • Wedges: thrifted

End Notes:

It’s been unseasonably cold in Houston, so when we went to visit the Rothko Chapel and St. Basil today I asked my mother-in-law if I could borrow a jacket. She kindly obliged and let me take this dramatic, ruffled Testimony coat.

It’s a little big on me, and with all my layering underneath I may have edged into the realm of “bum chic” ala the Olsen twins. But still, how can you resist a garment that’s so fun?

29 December 2009 – The Beauty of Borrowing, originally uploaded by academichic.

One of the reasons I could be so cavalier about packing light for my holiday travels was the knowledge that, at least in Houston, I’d have a couple of other reliably fabulous closets to pillage in case of a style emergency. So, thanks, Mom for letting me play dress up.

Do you have someone whose closet you like to raid?

29 December 2009 – The Beauty of Borrowing, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Layers Upon Layers, Pants Please, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Visiting Lecturer

28 December 2009

December 28th, 2009 § 38 comments §

28 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
Sources:
  • Plaid Shirt – Gap
  • Grey Long-Sleeve Tee – American Eagle
  • Jeans- Banana Republic
  • Wellies – Banana Republic
  • Earrings- hand-me-down from Sister M.
Endnotes:
I got a bunch of new clothes for Christmas and have been hitting the post-Christmas sales.  I bought this blue buffalo plaid shirt at the Gap and I love it!  I like how bright the blue is, the ruffle detailing down the front, and the fact that it has no pockets (pockets don’t do much for my chest).
Blue Plaid and Earrings, originally uploaded by academichic.
For Christmas, my mom gave me these wonderfully versatile wellies from Banana Republic.  They are black rubber with a brown leather cuff and are warm, water-proof, and incredibly comfortable, while also being rather chic.  I wore them sledding this morning and am wearing them to dinner tonight.

On another note, I’m fascinated by S.’s hair experiment and would be curious if there are any blonds out there trying it.  I have naturally curly hair that I straighten most days.  I wash and condition my hair almost everyday (and definitely every time I exercise), but use very little product in my hair b/c I find it makes it very greasy. When I wear my hair curly, it starts out looking pretty good, but is a frizzy and greasy mess by the end of the day. I don’t know that I could ever embrace the “no-poo” movement, but I would be willing to test out some new curly hair regiments – any ideas?    A.

28 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Layers Upon Layers, Our Best Flatware, Pants Please, Research Casual, Weekend Wear
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28 December 2009 – Hair Matters

December 28th, 2009 § 41 comments §

28 December 2009 , originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:
All remixed except scarf:

  • Maroon top – a.n.a., thrifted
  • Black tank as vest – Limited, thrifted
  • Skinnies – Celebrity Pink, thrifted
  • Knee socks – J.Crew
  • Boots – BR
  • Green scarf – gift from T. from Christmas Market

Endnotes:

Wow, seeing A’s and E’s posts from yesterday really made me wish I had sisters. Being an only child is no fun. I hope you’re having a wonderful time with your families, you two! I’m having a great time with my grandparents and S2, who’s like my ersatz sister, so all is well.

Since I received a lot of comments on my hair yesterday, I decided to answer some of the questions that came my way regarding my ‘new hair routine’. So first some background: I used to do everything to straighten my hair and to basically have it appear anything unlike my hair in its natural state. The grass is always greener, right? But lately I’ve been really loving curls on others and appreciating my own curly/wavy tresses and have decided to embrace them rather than fight them. Some googling here and there when procrastinating has led me to conclude the following about how to care for curls:

1) wash less often
2) ditch the shampoo

I am by no means a hair expert and don’t know that this approach will work for you, it’s just proven really great for my hair. I have read several things that suggest that thick and curly hair needs less frequent washing and that once a week should suffice. I now only wash my hair about once every five days. The other thing I’ve come across is that shampoos with sodium laureth sulfates contain really harsh detergents that strip hair of natural oils and wreak a special kind of havoc on curls. There is a whole “no ‘poo” movement out there I had no idea about (and some very heated debates on the issue – who knew!). I’ve decided to go with a conditioner only washing routine.

28 December 2009 , originally uploaded by academichic.

I no longer blow dry, straight iron, brush my hair when wet (which brushes out the curls, I just towel scrunch), nor do I use any of the myriad of ‘curl enhancing’ or ‘smooth straightening’ products I used to apply. After only about a month of far less hair washing and with only conditioner, my hair feels silkier, has more curl in it, and is much more manageable. (Do I sound like an ad or what?) It’s still going through that six week adjustment period during which your scalp overproduces oil until it adjusts to the ‘no ‘poo’ routine, so during this time I’ve found that braids work wonders for camouflaging that. But even so, I’m preferring this curlier and almost frizz-free version to the way my hair used to look. All I use is a 60 cent bottle of Belea conditioner from my local drugstore and I’m good to go.

This is just my experience and I’m only sharing it in case someone else with similar hair would like to try it and see if it helps her hair the way it’s helped mine. I find that there is a plethora of information out there for how to style straight hair or how to beat curly hair into straight hair submission, but far less on how to embrace and love your natural waves or curls. Please pitch in if you have any information on this topic that you’d like to share – I’m always on the hunt for more tips! S.

Some other helpful link:

28 December 2009 , originally uploaded by academichic.
Scarf Detail, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Layers Upon Layers, Our Best Flatware, Pants Please, Research Casual
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27 December 2009 – Stylish Sisters

December 27th, 2009 § 10 comments §

27 December 2009 – Stylish Sisters, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:

On P.:
Light green sweater – Banana Republic
Cream skirt – Banana Republic
Silver belt – JCrew
Silver flats – Antonio Meloni, borrowed from mom

On E.:
Cardigan – Pretty Please, from Marshalls
Belt – Gap Outlet
Teal nursing tank – Old Navy
Denim pencil skirt – Banana Republic Factory
Blue tights – Target
Wedges – thrifted
Wooden hoops – Wet Seal

On L.:
Dark green shirt – Gap
Tweed skirt – Ann Taylor Loft
Riding boots – Banana Republic Factory
Tights – Banana Republic

On H.:
Pink sweater – Gap
Skirt – Ann Taylor Loft Outlet
Boots – Naturalizer Outlet
Necklace – American Eagle

End Notes:

(For those keeping track of my 14 days, 1 bag effort, I wore 4+6+8+20+black ankle pants — a last-minute packing squeeze — on Christmas day and 7+11+13+17+19 to the movies yesterday.)

Having grown up with three younger brothers, I have an extra measure of appreciation for the style-benefits of hanging out with my sisters-in-law. My sisters-in-law have been featured here before, but never all in a single photograph!

My sisters-in-law have mastered the art of clean, classic style and adapted it to suit their particular bodies and seasons in life. H. (on the far right) is a college freshman and she capitalizes on her height with a short skirt — with pockets! — and mid-calf wedge boots for a look that is on-trend while still referencing timeless pieces.

L. (in the middle), who is a junior in college, mixes her classic tweed skirt with her (new as of Christmas!) flat riding boots. L. has the fairest coloring and curviest figure of the sisters, and she has learned early how to choose the best hues and shapes to flatter herself.

P. (on the far left, holding baby e.) is wearing what she terms her “new teacher” outfit. Indeed, her light blue green sweater, full cream skirt, and silver accessories are a crisp take on classic shapes. I met P. when she was a freshman in college when I was her R.A. and ever since then she has been my example of how tailored, timeless style need not be stuffy.

Meanwhile, I continue my traveling capsule wardrobe iterations by belting this usually open, swinging cardigan closed and blousing it for volume to balance my hips.

27 December 2009 – Stylish Sisters, originally uploaded by academichic.

27 December 2009 – Stylish Sisters, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Our Best Flatware, Skirting the Issue, Visiting Lecturer

24 December 2009

December 27th, 2009 § 7 comments §

24 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
Sources:
  • Grey Wrap Cardigan – NY & Co
  • Black Henley – Gap
  • Green Ruffle Top – Old Navy
  • Skinny Jeans – Banana Republic
  • Black Patent Belt – Forever 21
  • Earrings – Hand-me-down from sister M.
Endnotes:
Happy Holidays dear readers!  I have been traveling through the Midwest visiting my and A2′s families.

We spent Christmas Eve with my family and we were having too much fun to worry about capturing the perfect outfit-post picture, so these family snapshots will have to do.

I think all of my  sister’s looked adorable – unfortunately the pictures are limited (no picture of sister R.) and I’m not positive where all their fabulous pieces are from.  As you can see, the love of belting runs in the family!

24 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic
I wore my favorite comfy wrap cardigan and dressed it up with big black earrings and my holiday-perfect ruffly green top.  I layered it all over my black henley for warmth and wore my skinnies so I could sit on the floor to open presents and play board games – a practical yet chic holiday ensemble.

I hope you are all enjoying your holidays!  A.

24 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Layers Upon Layers, Night Without Grading, Visiting Lecturer, Weekend Wear
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27 December 2009 – Belters Annonymous

December 27th, 2009 § 23 comments §

27 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:
All remixed except for pashmina scarf:

Endnotes:

I recently picked up this sparkly orangey pashmina in a little shop here in Romania. What better outfit to add it to than this black dress and purple cardi combo, which gives this gold-threaded orange beauty the perfect chance to pop.

Sparkly Scarf, originally uploaded by academichic.

After putting it on and creating a cowl-neck collar with it, I decided that it was just begging to be belted. Now it’s become sort of a joke that we here at academichic like to belt anything and everything, but until today, I had not yet dared the belted-scarf-look. In this case, the largesse of the pashmina and the way it it layed due to its volume and size, belting it just made a whole lot of sense to me. It fused the pashmina with the cardi resulting in a collared top as such. I think I may have to give this belted-scarf look more tries in the future.

What do you think? Have you tried the belted scarf yourself this season? Do you ever find yourself thinking, ‘hi, my name is ___ and I’m a compulsive belter’ ? If so, you’re not alone! S.

27 December 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Color Combinations, Dresses for Day, Layers Upon Layers, Reaching New Heights, Teaching Outfits
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25 December 2009 – Happy Holidays!

December 25th, 2009 § 8 comments §

25 December 2009 – Happy Holidays!, originally uploaded by academichic.

Sources:
All remixed except for bolero:

  • Bolero – gift from my Romanian Santa
  • Purple beads - F21
  • Fuchsia top – BR Outlet
  • Batik skirt – was my grandmother’s
  • Woven belt – F21
  • Boots – Dillards

Endnotes:

Happy Holidays!

I’m spending Christmas and New Year’s in Romania, eating lots of my grandma’s delicious food and catching up on some reading for pleasure. For Christmas Day yesterday, I decided to dress up wearing a skirt I stole from my grandmother’s closet a while ago and my new bolero from my Romanian Santa. Clearly, this Romanian Santa has a good sense of style. This little shrug is going to gets lots of rotation in my closet.

Bolero, originally uploaded by academichic.

I love the juxtaposition of slightly delicate and dainty pieces of clothing like this crochet bolero or a full floral skirt worn with a pair of sturdy and somewhat rugged boots. In general, I’m really finding myself increasingly drawn to outfits that are made of unexpected pairings and juxtaposed aesthetic sensibilities; tough and delicate, formal and casual, modern and vintage… and so on. I anticipate that this kind of approach to dressing will increasingly characterize my style in the coming year.

Whatever you’re doing (or are wearing) today, I hope you’re having a lovely Holiday Season with your family and friends! La mulți ani! S.

25 December 2009 – Happy Holidays!, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Night Without Grading, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue, Teaching Outfits
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E. on the Road, Day 1 of 14

December 24th, 2009 § 4 comments §

I’ll be doing my best to mobile blog during my 14 day travels, so please excuse the more rudimentary formatting and iPhone photos.

Today we’re heading to Texas and, yes, we’re managing with just carryons (albeit heavy ones). I’m wearing the outfit I described in yesterday’s packing post, plus my favorite brown wedges.

Category: Layers Upon Layers, Sabbatical