23 March 2011 – Brown and Navy

March 23rd, 2011 § 14 comments §

23 March 2011


Dress – thrifted and chopped by me
Jacket – thrifted
Belt – thrifted
Necklace – thrifted
Shirt underneath – AE, hand me down
Boots – Dillards
Bike – ’69 Raleigh Sports


The inspiration for this outfit came while flipping through the last issue of Lucky. The magazine started this fun feature on the last page of each issue, showcasing ‘mom style icons’. (For more, check out My Mom, the Style Icon.) In the March issue, a sassy 70s mom is pictured sitting on the hood of a Renault along with her daughter – the reader, who submitted the photograph.

The outfit is comprised of simple yet eye-catching pieces: a printed navy sheath dress, a fitted brown turtleneck, brown boots and belt, and a pendant on a long chain. As soon as I saw it, I knew I had the pieces in my closet to recreate my version of this look.

23 March 2011 Inspiration image

So I pulled out this newly thrifted and altered dress and added the brown accessories and called it a day. I love it when I don’t have to stare at my closet in the morning, trying to decide what to wear. We recently had a Weekend Workshop in which we showed how we derive much of the inspiration for our outfits, many of which come from looks we spy in magazines and on TV and then try to recreate using what we already own. As I’m getting bigger each week, I’m really hesitant to add anything new to my closet, not knowing how much wear I’ll get out of anything at this point. So I’m constantly on the lookout for little snippets of inspiration that allow me to get creative with the things I already own (and still fit).

Where do you find your inspiration? Is your mom one of your style icons? ~ S.

23 March 2011

Category: Color Combinations, Dresses for Day, Layers Upon Layers, Maternity Style, Research Casual, Teaching Outfits, Vélocouture
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27 January 2011 – Marooned

January 27th, 2011 § 18 comments §


  • Sweater Dress: Banana Republic Factory
  • Belt: Anthropologie
  • Tights: Italy
  • Shoes: BR
  • Blazer: Anne Taylor Loft
  • Scarf: thrifted
  • Bracelet: Accessorize

I’ve been on the hunt lately for dresses because life is so much easier when I can just match tights, belt, shoes and dress rather than several layers of separates. Basically, it’s the end of January and I’m feeling lazy! I scored this sweater dress (very similar to E.’s great burgundy dress) at the BR factory outlet recently and was trilled that it was on sale. I was a little worried that it was a tad short for teaching, but like E. said with her new yellow skirt, I decided that with tights it was fine. Even as a petite woman I’ve been finding it really hard lately to find dresses or skirts (that aren’t pencil skirts) that come to an inch or two above my knee rather than three or four inches above my knee. Is anyone else having that problem? I thought I’d treat maroon as a neutral and pair it with navy blue and brown (a combination with which E. has also dabbled). I added the blazer because it’s still freezing out.

This scarf is something that I thrifted when I was 5. Yes, you read that correctly. I remember going to the church fair with my grandmother and picking this one out specifically because of the gold details and the brilliant blue and orange. I guess it was only a matter of time before a few of my friends asked me to join their style blog (wink wink). The combination of the diamond patterned tights and the more scrolling floral motif of the scarf also counts towards my new quest to mix patterns!

It has languished in my dress-up box since I was about 10, but I recently was digging through the attic at home and salvaged a few items (including this costume jewelry pin) from my treasure trove. What items do you still have in your wardrobe from when you were a kid?


Category: Color Combinations, Dresses for Day, Mixing Patterns, Reaching New Heights, Teaching Outfits
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3 November 2009 – NaNoWriMoWear

November 4th, 2009 § 20 comments §

3 November 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.


All remixed:


Yesterday’s outfit turned out to be a pretty perfect NaNoWriMo one, although my main thought when putting it together was that I hadn’t worn blue and brown together in a while and that needed remedying. Blue and brown is a wonderful color combination and seems to work in any season, don’t you think?

Brown and Blues, originally uploaded by academichic.

After mixing some blues with a good dose of brown, throwing a bit of gray in for good measure, and finishing with a pop of red in the earrings, I was set to start writing for the day.

We all know that boots and a scarf are a perfect cold-day remedy, but I’m now adding a jersey dress to that list as well. I think my perfect writing uniform for a cool fall day (if we’re taking pajamas off the list here) would include a comfortable pair of boots, a cozy pashmina scarf, and a soft pajama-ish textured jersey dress. Thus equipped, I was able to hit my day’s word count and spare time for some pesky dissertation work. Thanks, outfit!

Earrings detail, originally uploaded by academichic.

And on a related note, I’ve recently come across this wonderful post by writer Natalie Whipple on Tips for First Drafting. If you’re NaNoing along, you might also find it useful. I find her entire blog, Between Fact and Fiction, to be extremely charming and full of lovely advice and insights into the craft of writing. So if writing’s your thing, be sure to check it out! S.

Category: Color Combinations, Dresses for Day, Layers Upon Layers, Office Hours, Reaching New Heights, Teaching Outfits
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7 October 2009 – Ode to A.

October 7th, 2009 § 8 comments §

7 October 2009 – Ode to A., originally uploaded by academichic.


  • Turquoise cardigan: Gap
  • Blue green top: BR Outlet
  • Brown skirt: BR Outlet
  • Red Wedges: Naturalizers, via DSW

End Notes:

S. and I are paying homage to A-style today, and this is my interpretation of an A-worthy outfit. While S. riffed off of A.’s adept layering of ruffles under a cardigan, I’m playing with some of A.’s signature colors: shades of blue green. A. definitely knows how to work this color palette, and she always looks great in it.

A. has become my dearest friend in my department over the past few years and has helped keep me sane through some storms of academic drama. We work extraordinarily well together, whether we’re co-teaching a class, planning a lesson, curating an exhibition, or just tandem shopping. She’s a hard worker, incisive thinker, warm teacher, and supportive friend.

Happy birthday, A! Here’s to another year of impeccable style and fashion-forward feminism. Will you be premiering one of your birthday gifts today?

7 October 2009 – Ode to A., originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Color Combinations, Office Hours, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue, Teaching Outfits
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14 July 2009 – Neutrals

July 14th, 2009 § 12 comments §

14 July 2009 – Neutrals, originally uploaded by academichic.


  • Brown top – Ann Taylor
  • Black lace trimmed cami – Ann Taylor, remixed
  • Brown belt – BR, borrowed from mom
  • Navy skirt – Talbots, borrowed from mom
  • Black wedges – Connie, thrifted, remixed
  • Silver bangle – gift from dad


Today I’m doing a rare color combination for me and one that I should definitely put together more often: browns, black, and navy. Together they create a dark, sophisticated, and rich color palette – really making me wonder why I don’t mix them more often! (I only wore black, navy, and brown together once before and it was for the Fashion 101 module on neutrals the first time around).

Some of you noted, that you believe a black and brown pairing to look more convincing and intentional when the two neutrals come to meet side by side.  So today I tried to do just that; I layered a black cami under my brown top, hoping to show that black and brown were meant to come together in this look. By extension, it should look like no accident that my black shoes were added to a brown belt and brown purse.

Although these darker neutrals may appear to be more fall or winter appropriate, I think they translate well to a summer outfit too. It gives this skirt and top combo somewhat of a professional ‘I mean business’ look. It actually made me feel like I should be going to teach a class in this outfit. But since I won’t be teaching for a couple of semesters, I just had to file this away mentally in my “to teach in” category.

This makes me think that I should file away outfits like this in our Teaching Outfits category on this site. I may not actually be going off to teach today, but I would consider this a perfect inspiration outfit to those of you looking for ideas on what to wear when teaching and for myself when returning to my teaching days. So expect teaching appropriate outfits to be tossed that way even if they were not actually taught in that day. I hope you don’t object to the minor technicality! S.

Category: Color Combinations, Reaching New Heights, Skirting the Issue, Teaching Outfits
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3 June 2009

June 3rd, 2009 § 17 comments §

3 June 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.
All remixed except skirt

I purchased this skirt during an impromptu stop at Old Navy.  I found it buried in the clearance rack and it  was the only one I saw.  It was my size and only $3.99, so I couldn’t resist!  When I purchased it, earlier this week, it was 90 degrees out and I figured this skirt would sit in my closet with the tags on until September at the earliest.  I usually try to avoid these kinds of purchases, but again it was $4!!

Well, when the storms came blowing though our area last night, the temperature dropped dramatically and I decided today might be the once chance to premiere my new skirt before the fall.  I have been chilly all day, and actually wish I had taken this rare June day as an opportunity to pull out a blazer and a scarf (aka S.’s daily wear this week).

Being Midwestern-born, I am used to these crazy fluctuations in weather and usually only pack away select seasonal clothing, because you never know what the temperature will be on any given day.  But, I have read in many style magazines and on many style blogs that a major fashion no-no is to wear season-innapropriate fabrics and colors.  I think corduroy definitely counts as a season-innapropraite fabric for summer.  I’ve tried to keep this look summery with the bright colors and lightweight cotton cropped sweater.

Do you pack away all of your fall and winter clothing in April?  Do you have certain fabrics or colors you would never wear in a given season?
3 June 2009, originally uploaded by academichic.

Category: Beltless, Color Combinations, Our Best Flatware, Skirting the Issue
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