This is the weekly "Help Style Me!" post, where we can share items we are having trouble putting outfits together with. Elaine (in this post) says it best, "You know, that thing you bought because you love it and you keep pulling it out and then putting it away without wearing it?"
share your J.Crew item (either that you own or
are thinking about getting) that you would love help
creating an outfit with.
please help out by offering your styling advice. Feel
free to include links to your blog (where you
incorporated that piece) or to Polyvore (where you
showcased an outfit with that piece). Thanks in advance!
Got my fun magical unicorn top tonight-- how are you styling yours? Aside from jeans :-)ReplyDelete
I would tone down the pattern a bit with a neutral coloured bottom - a pencil skirt or pants in beige.Delete
Monica, I have a cognac leather skirt that I'm going to pair the top with.Delete
Have you worn it yet, Monica? I like the idea of the lightweight wool Jackie shell in leopard underneath. I would want to wear it with black shorts w/ tights, or the pleated faux leather skirt in any of the colors. Black Martie bottoms also sounds like an easy but nice choice.Delete
I have a few sneak previews here.
can't believe they decided to keep making the penny top. the other striped tunic looks to close to the hospital scrub top I wear at work. the first pic of the floral skirt...dreadful. Wow...I MAY NOT LIKE MUCH THIS SPRING...Delete
Oh my gosh, that Ratti Striped Floral is MINE!! (Well, if it comes in Petite anyways.) I haven't cared terribly for most of the Ratti prints, but I really like this one. I like the Cashmere sweater, too, but the price is way outta my budget.Delete
Thank you for the pics! I love that Ratti pencil skirt too, it's gorgeous! I've sworn off more pencil skirts but I may cave on this one. :)Delete
This is not a Jcrew item but I still have not worn it after almost a year! Body con sweater skirt from anthro. It has stumped me. How would you make it less sultry and more either casual or work appropriate. Any help is very much appreciated! https://www.anthropologie.com/shop/serilda-midi-skirtReplyDelete
I have a similar dilemma with a skirt I just bought, I love the skirt, but don't want even a whiff of sexy if I'm wearing it for work. Winters are very cold here, so I'm thinking dark tights and wedge boots in a more casual style (though after much shopping I'm finding that wedges aren't very popular this season). I like the blouse they've styled your skirt with on the model, and think something like that would work well with a more casual boot or shoe.Delete
I have a black knit miniskirt from Madewell that poses the same challenge. (I think) I've toned it down by pairing it with bright or interesting tops that draw the eye up. I had been pairing it with a white buttondown (untucked) and peacock blue jackie. That cardi has since been retired and lately I've been pairing it with a boxy cableknit mockneck sweater. Solid black tights and flats in both cases, again to avoid calling attention to the skirt. Still not my most professional outfit, but knit/sweater skirts are so comfy and cosy at this time of year!Delete
Thanks for the input! Dark tights and boots would help. Maybe a tshirt and blazer will take it down a notch in sexiness. Worth a try before I donate it!Delete
In some of the previews of the next roll out people have posted, there's a liberty print shirt sleeve PJ set. (The pictures only show the top with chinos tho.) I really like this look but haven't bought into the PJ to look before. What do you guys think? It's quirky enough for me without being too over the top. How has everyone been wearing their PJ tops besides jeans?ReplyDelete
Can we also talk about streamlined closets? Mastering your look? I feel like I'm struggling with this lately because I'm a total squirrel when it comes to clothes - I like pattern, colors, shiny things - basically anything that catches my eye and sometimes my closet feels disparate. It makes mornings tough trying to find that perfect mix. How do I narrow down my look and edit my closet? Then, how do I shop? Pinterest is no help because I'm a squirrel on there too. There are so many incredibly dressed women on this blog who really nail their look so well - just wondering if you have any tips!ReplyDelete
I was so sick of not being able to mix and match almost everything in my closet that I did away with most color. I'm a NY girl so this works for me. Black is my neutral. I pretty much only wear black or denim bottoms. I do have a few pairs of white or other colored shorts/skirts but I find it easier to wear colored shorts than pants because there's a lot less fabric. Shirts I only have black, white, gray, red and some light blue/chambray. Blazers and coats, I've added some other patterns and colors. Patterns, I tend to stick with geometrics, like stripes or plaid. I have a few florals that are very geometric that work with all black. Some scarves or shoes in other colors but most everything works with my black base or black and red. It limits my shopping and spontaneous purchases.Delete
@liz I am in the same boat. I keep buying & buying & purging & purging but end up so overwhelmed yet hard-pressed to come up with outfits I actually like which aren't boring. I tend to think of pieces singularly instead of the "can I wear this three ways" rule (TM Gigi?) & that needs to change.Delete
@liz@Taylor, I hear you, I love patterns and colour, and could never survive with a capsule wardrobe, I'm definitely a squirrel! I'm also terrible at layering, which is something I've learned a lot about on this blog. I know I have a lot of great pieces, and I just need to be more adventurous in putting things together (as Taylor said, wear something 3 ways).Delete
I also have the same affinity for colors, patterns, sparkles, etc. What works for me is 1) sticking with cool colors so the items tend to mesh well, and 2) using neutral bottoms (gray pants, blue jeans) and toppers to avoid overwhelming the fun stuff and look polished.Delete
I also don't think I could do a capsule wardrobe and I too like my colors, patterns, sparkles. I don't know if I've mastered my look per se, but I do think I've gotten to the point where I have a good mix of classics/prints and can mix/match.Delete
I'm a little old school and still use Polyvore to plan my outfits and while it takes a while to clip/save the outfit items, when I sit down to plan my outfits out I have much more luck with PV than standing in my closet because you can sort by color and see how other people have used items in sets. Pinterest gets too overwhelming. I definitely have purging to do but I would agree that I try to keep one or two pieces neutral and then kick it with s fun color/pattern, shoes or a necklace.
I've tried to pare down a bit rather than wearing all of the things and I do try to purchase items that I know will work with items I already have - it never fails that the one off items sit and don't get worn.
Me too as far as trying to limit the colors in my wardrobe. I try to stick to black, grey, white, navy, and blue of all shades, and to limit other colors to scarves or other accessories. That said, a fair number of fuchsia items crept in last year. :P I also try to limit silhouettes -- skinnies or pencil skirts with tailored or slightly boxy tops work best for me. Boring at times, but it does give me a framework to follow.Delete
Yes, on the silhouettes too, although I keep experimenting with wide leg pants and I think I might need to stop.Delete
See, this is interesting to me because I have my silhouettes down - I am very aware at this point what works & what doesn't work on my body & I buy with that in mind. It's just the magpie mentality that plagues me too - "Ooh, look at that fun print!" "Ooh, look at that great texture!" "Ooh, there's a color I don't have!" I have a major problem with loving ALL!OF!THE!COLORS! despite the fact I know what I should & shouldn't wear near my face. I also have a major problem buying multiples of items, especially if they're at a great price-point.Delete
The "Wear w 3 Items" rule is effective for me and I always ask myself where I'm going to wear an item/outfit and for what occasion. Minimizes the "fantasy closet" of stuff that's not practical for my real life. I hate buying something because it looks great on somebody else or some incentivized blogger is raving about it, only to find I feel like a "fashion victim" when I get it home. Money wasted.Delete
I also use The Kohl's Test" which is especially effective for the poorer-quality items J Crew churns out these days. I ask myself if I would buy and wear the item if it had a Kohls label instead of a J Crew label. Minimizes the bad decisions when I feel the pressure of a pop back or free shipping!
Liztriden - in terms of planning and getting out the door in the mornings, have you considered the Stylebook app? I have far too many clothes because I like variety and I enjoy the thrill of a good deal. I would wear a skirt with a certain top, think that they worked well together, but then when when I wanted to wear that skirt again, I had completely forgotten what I wore on with that skirt, causing me to tear through my closet, wasting precious time in the morning. (Of course,if I can't remember what works with what, that means I have too many clothes but I digress.) Stylebook allows me to save the combinations of items (clothes, shoes, scarf, etc.) that I like as "looks" so that I can see what items I have worn as outfits and put together in the past. There's a calendar so I can record what items or outfits I have worn on what day. There have been a couple of bloggers who wrote about their experiences with stylebookDelete
The app is not perfect but it also gives you cost per wear figures which I find strangely fascinating. I don't know what the US cost is but I think I paid $5 Canadian for the app. Best $5 I ever spent.
Further on the subject of Stylebook - for anyone interested in the app, I have one big recommendation. Don't bother taking your own pictures. You can find pictures of most clothes on line, even clothes from a few seasons ago. If you can't find a picture of a particular, for example, red corduroy pants - you can just use an online photo of a different pair of red corduroy pants. I spent a lot of time early on trying to take my own photos before I realized it was unnecessary and took way too much time.Delete
Love this thread, ladies! I'm in the beginning of a major closet purge, and am trying to curb what's coming in. My newest tool/rule is to ask myself if I'm wearing like items already in my closet frequently enough to justify more (pencil skirts, silk blouses, etc). I gravitate toward dressier items, but have an increasingly casual office and general lifestyle. It's eye-opening when I have endless options for church but can't find a cute tee to wear to the mall or a ballgame.Delete
@TorontoModern, thanks for the tip! I've yet to try these styling apps, but they sound exactly like something I could use and need. I have a good collection of clothing, but often have issues putting outfits together in a rush, or even the night before. Sometimes tops and bottoms that I think would go together, don't. Looking forward to playing with this this weekend!Delete
@litzriden, I started following @cocobordeaux on IG because I was intrigued by her commitment to a year long shopping fast in 2016. Here's a link on her blog about developing your style. Hope it's helpful to you.Delete
Streamlining my closet is absolutely a weakness, every time I try this I seem to fail. The inner girl in me is drawn to colours, ruffles, pink etc. even though a number of items don't really fit my lifestyle with my young children. I envy those who know their style and don't seem tempted to stray from it. I have a closet full of J.crew but have a hard time putting things together. Sometimes I buy an item thinking it will look great with one of my skirts or pants but it doesn't. I've also been guilty of buying a new item (ie shoes) and then buying more items that I think will match my new item so the cycle of buying keeps going. My closet is pretty organized (by type and then by color) but I have an alarming amount of clothes that just sit there. I'm going to try to use some of the great suggestions from jcas to edit my closet. I look at my sister and I can describe her style but I think she would say my style is Jcrew lol - I wear mostly Jcrew but I'm all over the place in terms of types of clothes that I wear.Delete
@TM93 - if you do buy the Stylebook app, you may want to check out the website online www.stylebookapp.com because they give lots of good tips that will ultimately save you time and help you get the most use of the app. On the days I have no time in the morning, it really helps to have a "database" of outfits I have enjoyed before and not worry about what goes with what. It also helps me see what I have been wearing a lot and what I have not been wearing.Delete
On the topic of streamlined wardrobes - while I admire people with signature styles and streamlined closets, I decided long ago that this was not something I would personally enjoy. I will be the first to admit that I spend far too much time and money on clothes (looking at clothes available for purchase, thinking about what to buy, trying them on, agonizing about what to keep and return, returning the rejects, organizing the ones I decide to keep, deciding on combinations, reassessing old purchases). But I am not hurting anyone. My bills are paid and my children are not deprived of anything. Really, it's a hobby. To me, it's no different than someone who collects figurines or Pez dispensers. I collect clothes. I know that some people would say that this is a frivolous use of time and money, but I enjoy it. Strangely, if I spent a comparable amount of money on golf, that would be seen as socially more acceptable. But I don't see any difference (except maybe golf would give you a bit of exercise). For me, clothing is fun, and a lot of the fun would be gone for me if I were forced to streamline. But different things work for different people and some people would have more fun and enjoyment from a streamlined wardrobe.
But even though I have accepted that I am destined never to be a minimalist, it is always good to be aware of the possibility of there being just "too much" - especially when J Crew is having 60% off...
I'd like to be more streamlined, but I err on the side of Toronto Modern. I actually blame my father because when he like a style of sweater or shirt, he purchased them in every color, and I do this too. He was such as clotheshorse! Anyway, when I started shopping at J.Crew, I created an Excel Workbook as a means to track how much I spent on each item. My "wardrobe inventory" is my base sheet, and I pull from that to assemble outfits that I categorize on additional sheets. Those sheets are usually labeled by "bottoms" since I tend to use a pair of pants, jeans, or a skirt as my starting point, then add a top, jacket, scarf, shoes, and jewelry. Left side of the sheet is Fall/Winter, right side is Spring/Summer. I have an additional sheet where I copy and paste my "outfit" to create a log of what I wear on a daily basis. The inventory sheet comes in handy when I consign because I can pull together a list of items, with retail prices, as a guide for the consignment shop. Good grief, I sound like a dork, but it helps me manage the chaos. Perhaps this is another kind of "retail therapy."Delete
I thought about doing that at the beginning of this year. I did attempt to streamline my closet a few years ago. It sorta kinda worked out? I really only ended up getting rid of colors that I finally realized would never suit my complexion and styles that didn't compliment my frame. My closet still looks like a rainbow unicorn and the Mad Hatter had babies but I love it. My day to day style is eclectic. One day I'm all classic lady who lunches, the next I'm a skittles bag. I just wear what puts a smile on my face. Besides how in the world would I go about streamlining my millions of silk camis and blouses?Delete
This was such a great discussion! I don't think I can be a mimimalist but I will try harder to make more matches on new purchases and streamline a little bit. Baby steps :). I may investigate the style book app too. You ladies are the best!Delete
The can I wear 3 ways and Kohl's/F21 tests....great flashbacks! I wanted to do a post about what I loved at J Crew in 2016, but I haven't gotten around to it. One thing I did last year was stick to J. Crew for most purchases. I looked at other retailers online, but was often pressed for time and didn't visit them in-person.Delete
New J. Crew colors mix so well with past J. Crew colors. If I love something, I can take it home, stand in the closet and at least one or two things will pop out as a match.
I'll never be a minimalist or capsule wardrobe person either and I'm ok with that. Our weather has been very cold and rainy, inspiring me to make more layered outfits. That's helped me to work in a good number of pieces.
The Kohl's test is a great concept. This is one of the reasons I've really limited my shopping sources and try to only buy certain brands. Ideally I'd avoid poly, too, but it's everywhere, from cheap clothes to racks at Neimans. (At least it washes well.)Delete
@TorontoModern, well said! And thanks for the StyleBook review as well. I've wondered if I'd have the patience to catalogue my wardrobe and then actually use the app.Delete
Thanks to everyone for all the great replies, I love the "Kohl's test" as I've definitely caught myself buying JCrew for the sake of buying JCrew, though part of it is just familiarity as well. Lots of great ideas throughout this thread!
Thank you, Shopgrrrl. One final note about streamlined wardrobes. I hope people use then because they actually want one, not because they think they should have one. Having a streamlined wardrobe shouldn't be a badge of honour, nor should having a lot of clothes be a source of guilt. It should just be a matter of different strokes for different folksDelete
In terms of wardrobe management apps like Stylebook - they are definitely not for everyone. You have to have a certain type of personality to enjoy keeping track of this type of information. I can see how lots of people who enjoy clothes would not be into it at all. We all have lots of things to do in our lives that we don't want to do - no one should use one of these apps unless they want to.
While I use Stylebook there are other options. Here's a review of some of them
In terms of the time commitment, I understand your hesitation re stylebook or any other wardrobe management app. I have a lot of clothes and it did take me an embarrassing amount of time to get it set up. For Stylebook, the only app I have experience with, I would suggest that if you are willing to give it a try, the most efficient way is to test drive it is to start with the clothes, shoes and accessories you are wearing now. When you have some free time, you can look up these items online and then find pictures to import. It's really easy for the J Crew items because the style numbers are on the tag. I've found photos of 5 year old Banana Republic items online for importing too. If you find you like it, you can gradually expand to include more of your clothes. I think some people get very obsessive about the pictures being perfect and that makes it more time consuming. I try not to be because it's just a means to an end. You probably want to think a little bit about the categories you create because if you have too many items in a category finding things becomes hard. For example, I started with a "jeans" category but this did not work because I ended up with too many items in one category that were too difficult to distinguish. You can change your categories later, but it's nice if you can just set it up the way you need it.
One nice bonus about Stylebook - it has made me think hard about additional items. Somehow seeing all my Tippi sweaters pictures on one page is more effective at bringing home to me how many I have than seeing them folded in the closet!
Good topic. Upon hearing that the French tend to have 10-12 hangers in their wardrobe, I knew my closet frustrations realm had to change. I am not a minimalist, but I am leaning a little that way and finding my balance. Here's the biggest thing that helps me limit my clothing purchases, and also decides what gets to stay in my closet: I begin with Outerwear. So, I pick which jacket or coat I will wear this season. Everything has to coordinate with that piece, or it's a No.Delete
Secondly, I get everything in my closet to work together, I settled on some colors that can work together. Everything has to be either navy, black, cream, burgundy, gold and sometimes brown. I've allowed for patterns and prints that can work in this scheme. This have to be special pieces that I love. As long as they have at less one color in my scheme, they can stay. And of course they have to mesh with my chosen piece of Outerwear.
Until this past year, I had been hanging onto clothes from my early twenties. As well on tons of "good clothes" that weren't doing me any favors. I just had to learn to let go. Deep down, I want everything to be useful and get used. If I'm not using something, I should give someone else a chance to. That extra space is useful.
As for developing style, that is a work in progress. Whenever you feel wonderful wearing what you are, make a note of it. You may be able to identify some common factors that identifies your personal style. Don't be afraid to experiment or be unusual. My signature has become nylonsnor tights with knee socks with almost anything. I especially love them with shorts. It just makes me feel good.
I posted a real pic of the ultra wide leg chinos in black in my IG. they showed up late last night and my first reaction was, omg, Cavariccis, but the fit is actually nice, not sure if the fabric works, they definitely feel more spring than winter. I could always use a casual pair of black pants for warmer weather. Not sure if these are them! @wearthislikethis on IGReplyDelete
Lol @cavariccis. I totally remember those and may or may not have a pair back in the day.Delete
Second that, JessF, although I know for certain I had those jeans handed down from a beloved Auntie. I wore them, alright.Delete
OT but I received an email this morning saying 50% off (final) sale starts tomorrow in stores.ReplyDelete
I received the same email. As my store was 50% last week I'm not sure why they're expecting me to be excited about it this week, unless they've suddenly added a lot more to their sale section. With the exception of *one* bracelet, last week's selection was more or less the picked-over leftovers from what was there before Christmas.Delete
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It was fun to see the preorder stuff on the website today. There are some cute things - Pom-Pom Gemmas, Scalloped Skirt and ruffled chambray pieces look promising to me. The prints are disappointingReplyDelete
The new prints don't really appeal to me, either, this time around. The silver lining is that there is less to put on the wish list.Delete