15 June 2011 – The Imaginary Lightness of Being Pregnant

June 15th, 2011 § 4 comments §

The Imaginary Lightness of Being Pregnant


  • Shirt: thrifted
  • Belt: thrifted
  • Shorts: maternity consignment store
  • Sandals: Old Navy

End Notes:

I don’t know about S., but on days when I’m just feeling really HEAVY from being pregnant, it’s nice to throw on something thin and light and floaty and just pretend that gravity has no affect on my ligaments.

The Imaginary Lightness of Being Pregnant

Both A. and L. have worn their “short shorts” lately, and I have to say that I am really loving my own navy short shorts during this pregnancy. When I was pregnant with baby e. I wore maternity bermudas quite frequently. This time, however, I’ve embraced the shorter length especially because it allows me to play with some different proportions, like this one. Plus, I happen to like my legs in general and they seem relatively non-plussed by all the other pregnancy changes in my body.

Higher-waisted shorts, like the ones I wore last summer, are probably my preferred shorts silhouette overall, but I’m going to go ahead and say that over-the-bump maternity shorts sound like a bad idea. I’ll just wait for a while, thanks.

The Imaginary Lightness of Being Pregnant

Category: Maternity Style, Our Best Flatware, Proportionally, Research Casual, The Short of It
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2 June 2011 – A Visit to the Farm

June 2nd, 2011 § 16 comments §

2 June 2011 - A Visit to the Farm


  • Shirt – American Eagle
  • Shorts – Banana Republic Factory Store
  • Tank – Urban Outfitters
  • Earrings – Gift from S.
  • Sandals – H&M
  • Sunglasses – Banana Republic


This is certainly not my most exciting outfit (though I do think it looked much better in person than in these i-phone photos) but it was quite the exciting afternoon!  This year A2 and I joined a CSA on the recommendation of E and N. We picked up our first box of goodies two weeks ago at our local farmer’s market, but this week I decided to drive the 45 minutes to the farm to spend a couple hours picking some of my own produce and getting some sun with friends.

FieldsIt was hot. Really hot. So, I wore shorts (short shorts), a tissue thin button-down over an almost as thin tank, sandals and my aviators.  I picked these shorts up on the cheap at Banana Republic Factory store a couple weeks ago and have been living in them ever since.  I bought them because they actually fit both my thighs and my waist (well almost anyway).  I would have preferred them to be an inch or two longer and still feel a bit self-conscious in them.  What about you? Are you a shorts person?  Do you feel comfortable in non-Bermuda-length shorts?

2 June 2011 - A Visit to the Farm

The combination of thin plaid button-down, shorts, and big red canvas basket were perfect for a couple hours on the farm.  We got to pick three different kinds of peas and then make up bags full of  already harvested lettuces, greens (kale, spinach, etc), turnips, radishes, garlic scape, broccoli, and more.  We also picked pints of the most beautiful and delicious strawberries, but were down one before we ever even made it home!

StrawberriesAs we drove home with our haul enjoying the beautiful scenery (and consuming a  pint of strawberries and some snowpeas) we brainstormed a feast that would not require anything but our fresh veggies and some staples that were already in the pantry.  We shucked peas on the back deck with a bottle of whine and got to cooking.  For some reason I just fell in love with the rainbow swiss chard.  It comes out of the ground in these beautiful vibrant colors!  After photographing it, I put it in a vase to use as our centerpiece and to eat later this week.

Swiss Chard

All in all it was a wonder afternoon spent with friends and dirt and an equally wonderful evening spent with more friends and great food!

2 June 2011 - A Visit to the Farm

Category: Beltless, It's in the Bag, Our Best Flatware, Proportionally, The Short of It
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30 May 2011 – Hot and Cold

May 30th, 2011 § 6 comments §

The weather swings in academichic central lately have been crazy, swinging up from the fifties to the nineties in a matter of a few days. Which means my wardrobe choices have been something like this:

Gred is Great

Just So You Know



  • Cardigan: Target
  • Tank: Old Navy Maternity
  • Skirt: Old Navy Maternity
  • Wedges: Naturalizers, via DSW


  • Hat: Banana Republic
  • Scarf: gift from S.
  • Top: thrifted (and worn backwards)
  • Shorts: consignment shop
  • Shoes: Target, thrifted new
  • Clutch: c/o Crystalyn Kae (don’t forget to check out Crystalyn and other independent boutiques through our boutique consortium!)

End Notes:

S.’s post on sharing — or not sharing — maternity clothes also brought to mind a recent reader question about what to bring to a clothing swap, that is, how do you decide what clothes to give away or exchange?

I love it when I go to a swap and people have brought clothing that is still a) in great condition, b) not obviously dated, and c) is accompanied with the giver’s desire to find someone who really looks GREAT in that article of clothing. When I’ve culled through my closet, either for swaps, for donations, or to simply pass along to a friend, I am pretty ruthless about putting anything that I haven’t worn within the past year into a “consideration” pile. If something is still essentially new — I bought it on clearance and wore it once but then never again — I might first consider putting that up on eBay to make a few bucks. But, most of the time it’s something that either doesn’t fit my body quite right or a different silhouette that I attempted to integrate into my wardrobe but just didn’t work out. In that sense, I guess I tend to think of clothes-swapping as an opportunity to right my past shopping wrongs, rather than simply a means of cleaning out my closet.

I was delighted to see S. wearing that turquoise top in her pictures! That top got the cut from my wardrobe because it was just wishful thinking and a lot of tugging that kept that empire waistline tucked below my bust. Since I knew that my torso length was unlikely to shorten during future pregnancies, it was time to let that top go. Now we both win! The deal is, clothes-swapping can actually be a humbling experience — to go back through your closet and acknowledge that you did not make the wisest choices. But it can also be incredibly fulfilling when you can be happy to see someone else looking like a million bucks in a garment that didn’t really do much for you.

Just So You Know

Ultimately, I think a lot of these questions relate back to the notion of building a versatile, workable wardrobe that does what you want and says what you want it to say. Although these hot and cold outfits are fairly different from each other, I do think that they give some insight into how my style has changed a little since my last pregnancy. I’m a bit more daring with trends — shorter shorts with a draped top, for example — and I’m finally on board with stripes. I’m a hat lady now, too. On the other hand, the brightly colored shoes are still a big part of my repertoire, and I don’t see myself swapping those out any time soon!

How do you decide what ends up in a swapping pile?

Gred is Great

Category: Academichic Sponsor, Beltless, Maternity Style, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Research Casual, Skirting the Issue, The Short of It
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23 May 2011 – Take Two

May 23rd, 2011 § 7 comments §

23 May 2011 - Grape


  • Olive top: thrifted
  • Feather necklace: Tilly Bloom
  • Belt: swapped
  • Skirt: thrifted dress, cut into a skirt
  • Flats: Target, thrifted new

End Notes:

(It’s day 2 of my 15 for at least 15 mini challenge.)

It’s rare that “what the models are wearing” and “what the pregnant work-from-home mom is wearing” ever coincides. And yet, as I continue to pursue my new fascination with midi-length skirts, I find out that Selita Ebanks and I were basically wardrobe twins in high-waisted, full knee-length skirts and drapey tops. Except, of course, I’m wearing mostly thrifted jersey pieces and flats and she is…not.

23 May 2011 - Grape

Fun fact. In the winter of 1970, Paris fashion shows emphasized midi-skirt lengths as a direct and dramatic move away from the mini skirt that had dominated the 1960s. This did not go over so well. In fact, Life Magazine published a cover story bemoaning the loss of youthfulness and sexual allure symbolized by the mini. Nicola White, in her book The Fashion Business: Theory, Practice, and Image, suggests that many American women saw the midi skirt as a symbol of fashion’s excesses and as a result largely disregarded Paris’s style decree. Other women the longer skirt decree — and its associated connotations as “more feminine,” “conservative,” or “demure,” — as an attempt to tamp down on the sexual freedom women were claiming at that time. Do you think that these associations still remain strong today? And how much does context (both of where we see it and whose body it’s on) play into that interpretation?

Category: Color Combinations, Maternity Style, Our Best Flatware, Proportionally, Research Casual, Skirting the Issue, Teaching Outfits, Theoretical
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19 May 2011 – Swapped

May 19th, 2011 § 17 comments §

19 May 2011 - Swapped


  • Tunic Shirt: Edme & Esyllte via clothing swap
  • Shirt (under): Banana Republic
  • Belt: BR Outlet
  • Skinnies: Anne Taylor LOFT
  • Shoes: Dolce Vita via endless.com
  • Necklace: Accessorize (gift)

Nothing too exciting about this outfit other than the fact that I nabbed this great tunic shirt at the clothing swap I had recently. I have been having major problems getting excited to get dressed this week since it has been raining and in the 40s and 50s every day. Oh yeah, did I mention that it’s MID-MAY!!!!!!!!!! Needless to say, I’m going bonkers and am absolutely fed up with freezing in my classroom, so after my valiant attempt at spring tights last week, I’ve thrown in the towel on skirts in favor of pants until I see some serious sunshine.

19 May 2011 - Swapped closeup

My verdict is still out on this outfit, but in theory it was great. The loose tunic top, stretchy comfort of Anne Taylor ponte pants, and my new Dolce Vita flats! How cozy? How comfy? How not tight on my tumtum! Alas, the tunic seems a little too flowy (it is a size 12, but you can’t be too picky when it’s swapped/free!) and the belt I added to tame things just wasn’t sitting right on my torso no matter where I put it for some reason. I tried using a skinnier belt that was colorful, a looser belt that sat low, and a wide stretchy belt to pull it all in, but nothing worked. This was totally one of those outfits that left my room in a shambles because I had pulled EVERYTHING out of my closet to try to make it work. Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

Any ideas on how to make this tunic work in my wardrobe before it get’s put back in the swap-pile?


19 May 2011 - Swapped side

Category: Color Combinations, Our Best Flatware, Pants Please, Proportionally, Teaching Outfits
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18 May 2011 – Dandy

May 18th, 2011 § 10 comments §

18 May 2011


  • Jacket: thrifted
  • Brooch: vintage, etsy
  • Top: Forever 21
  • Jeans: Old Navy Maternity
  • Shoes: Dolce Vita, c/o solestruck.com

End Notes:

Not to get all theme-y on everyone, but dressing like a book cover proved irresistible today. I’ve been rearranging and cleaning out bookshelves lately, and little e. has become quite taken with David Hopkins’s After Modern Art: 1945-2000 textbook (featuring a still from Matthew Barney’s Cremaster Cycle on the cover).

After Modern Art

He keeps fishing it off of the shelf and brings it to me asking, “What is it? What is it, Mama?” You try explaining to a toddler that “it” is a hybrid satyr-cum-dandy who is the main character in a five film cycle by an American artist interested in aesthetic systems and notions of creation as found in biology, mythology, and geology. I’ve given it several goes, and the most meaningful explanation seems to have been, “It’s an artist being kind of silly.” To which little e. replied, “Cute.” And although I have to admit that Barney’s over-the-top films are not really my artistic cup of tea, the visual punch of a white jacket and red-orange hair against a purple plaid is pretty good outfit fodder, no? And it certainly had me feeling put-together and alert for a day of chapter writing.

If only I could raise one eyebrow on command.

Eyebrow Raising

Don’t forget…if you’ve taken outfit inspiration from a book cover lately, e-mail us a picture or link to it in the comments so we can do a bookworm style round-up next week.

18 May 2011

Category: Maternity Style, Pants Please, Proportionally, Research Casual
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11 May 2011 – Almost Not Quite

May 11th, 2011 § 8 comments §

11 May 2011 - Almost Not Quite


  • Coral cardigan: Banana Republic Factory (from last post-partum)
  • Striped tank: Target
  • Belt: thrifted
  • Skirt: Mimi Maternity, via eBay (from last pregnancy)
  • Orange pumps: Dolce Vita, via solestruck.com
  • Necklace: Figs and Ginger, Mother’s Day Gift from husband N. and little e.

End Notes:

There’s a lot of almost-not-quite sentiment wrapped up in this outfit. I wore it when proctoring my students’ final exam on Monday, meaning that my semester is almost-not-quite over as I’m currently wading my way through stacks of blue books. Then there’s the color combination of a coral cardigan and orange shoes, almost-not-quite matchy matchy or clashy clashy. (Incidentally, I like that I managed to wear the same shoes on both the first and last days of this academic year.)

Even this cardigan is an almost-not-quite. It almost-not-quite fits me when I’m a year post-partum. It’s too big on top and falls at an awkward length on my torso, meaning that I cycled it out of my rotation. But when I’m preggers or just-post-preggers, it hits just below my new, higher waist and provides adequate space for uh, newly ample bust. Behold:

19 August 2009 - Superhero Split 31 March 2010

Back to my theme. I am almost-not-quite halfway through a draft of the first chapter of my dissertation. I almost-not-quite have a new baby. And I definitely have some other big changes happening on the home front, and we’re currently in the almost-not-quite of those transitions. In the midst of all this, my husband and little e. gifted me with a sweet little necklace for Mothers’ Day this past Sunday, a reminder to cherish the right-now-very-definitely.

Figs and Ginger Bird Necklace

Husband N. found it at our local craft alliance, a silver necklace by Figs and Ginger, with three birds on a branch. As little e. tells me every time he sees the necklace: “Mama Bird, Dada Bird, and E-E bird!” It’s a precious, wearable encapsulation of our (now limited) time as a family of three, and as much as I am ecstatic to welcome a new baby into our home there will always be something beautifully special about little e. making me a mama for the first time.

Clearly, our clothes and jewelry can be so invested with memories and significance. What memories do you wear?

11 May 2011 - Almost Not Quite

11 May 2011 - Almost Not Quite

Category: Color Combinations, Maternity Style, Parenting in Academia, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue, Teaching Outfits
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21 April 2011 – Pop

April 22nd, 2011 § 5 comments §

22 April 2011 - Pop


Tunic: Tucker for Target
Belt: thrifted
Jeans: Old Navy maternity
Wedges: Crown Royale Vintage, via DSW

End Notes:

It’s ended up being a crazy week in my household and while I opted for easy earlier this week, yesterday I’m went for can’t-help-but-smile.

When I was pregnant with little e., the first time that I belted below the bump was a big deal to me, both personally and stylistically. This time around, I’m more comfortable with my changing shape, and it’s time once again to embrace a silhouette that is preggers-specific.

22 April 2011 - Pop

22 April 2011 - Pop

And now, it’s time to hustle everyone off to the airport for a weekend visit to N.’s family for Easter…

PS. Here are a few other ways I’ve remixed this bright floral tunic.

I Passed! 14 November 2010 - Poppy 22 December 2010 - Flower Child Work With What You've Got

Category: Maternity Style, Pants Please, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Research Casual
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19 April 2011 – Testing Period

April 19th, 2011 § 25 comments §

19 April 2011 - Testing Period


  • Powder Blue Cardigan – J Crew Outlet
  • Sea-foam Green Blouse – Banana Republic Factory Store
  • Brown Skirt – Thirfted (NY & Co)
  • Wedges – Kenneth Cole Reaction, via DSW
  • Belt – tie from a dress
  • Earrings – China Town, SF


Sometime in the next few weeks E. and I will be hosting another clothing swap.  At our last clothing swap I let go of a lot of items I hadn’t worn in quite some time, even items I loved.  I was happy to know they would go to a good home.  As we prepare for our next swap, I am slowly pruning my closet and creating a good sized pile in one corner of my room.  Well, actually, it’s two piles: one definite pile and one maybe pile. I decided to make a maybe pile and them attempt to wear them before the swap.  If I can happily incorporate the item into a ensemble in the next couple weeks, I’ll hold on to it.

Green Top

This ruffly-front sea-foam green blouse is the first item to be tested in this way.  Sadly, I think it failed.  I love the color of this blouse and the piping detail down the front, but that’s where it ends.  It doesn’t fit me all that well (a bit tight on top and loose and shapeless at the bottom) and it’s a bit too see-through for my likes. I tried layering it under a cardigan to deal with the fit on top and the see-through issue, but then really did not like how the ruffles fell. So, I’m thinking this blouse needs a new home.

Seafoam Green and Poweder Blue

As it turns out, I think I’m also on the fence about this skirt.  I picked this up at a giant thrift store for $4.  I don’t do well in those places and so I bought it with out trying it on.  I’ve been looking for a longer, full skirt in a neutral color (or non-neutral for that matter) for quite some time now and for $4 it seemed worth the risk.  I do like its color and length but I wish the fullness started at the waist and when I hike it up to make it do that, it’s too short.  I think I will give this one another shot before it ends up in the definite swap pile.

How do you decided what to keep and what to giveaway when you are pruning your closet?  Do you give the maybe items one last shot?

19 April 2011 - Testing Period

Category: Color Combinations, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue
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15 April 2011 – Floaty

April 15th, 2011 § 19 comments §

15 April 2011


Top: Forever 21, consignment shop
Necklace: Tilly Bloom
Belt: thrifted
Skirt: thrifted
Wedges: thrifted

End Notes:

Like Tania, I’ve been picking through my local thrift store for a midi-length skirt. I think there are a lot of “thriftable” trends this season, and the below-the-knee skirt is definitely among them. My search had to be extra particular, though, since I wanted something with an elastic waist and enough drape to accommodate my changing shape.

I think that this salmon colored skirt was originally an underskirt of some kind. It’s a really thin polyester with a super narrow hem. But, hey, for $2 it fit my purposes perfectly, and I’m already thinking of so many delicious color combinations based off of it.

This particular pairing came about as a springy reinterpretation of this February outfit, where I matched this navy batwing sleeve top with a winter white skirt and an orangey-pink floral necklace. I loved how the navy and salmon looked together then, and I still do now, even on this more dramatic scale. Plus, the drapey sleeves up top only help to emphasize that I do still have a waist — albeit a much higher one than usual — above the baby bump.

Tilly Bloom "Light as a..." necklace

Finally, it seemed appropriate to pair a floaty, breezy skirt with my “Light As A…” necklace from Tilly Bloom. I really loved how this whole look came together, and I haven’t had this much fun in wind with a skirt for a while. Indulge me, okay, while I channel, in turn, Marilyn Monroe and Nike of Samothrace.

Wind Tunnel 1

Wind Tunnel 2

Wind Tunnel 3

Wind Tunnel 4

Wind Tunnel 5

Category: Color Combinations, Maternity Style, Proportionally, Reaching New Heights, Teaching Outfits
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