Tuesday, February 27, 2018

pattern mixing

black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 5

Before blogging I would never have thought to pair floral with stripes. I didn't see anyone I knew in real-life doing it, and even if I had thought of it, I wouldn't have been brave enough to try it. Fast forward three years, and I didn't even think twice about throwing these two prints together. The black and white flowers tie nicely with the black and white stripes and the green is such a fun pop of color. I stuck to a neutral shoe to keep the outfit from looking too crazy - and voilĂ  outfit complete. 

Speaking of other things blogger/Pinterest inspired is the half-tucked shirt. I was quite proud of how I had oh so strategically tucked my top in, but my husband thought I had caught my shirt in my pants. While taking these photos, he was all "Hey, your shirt's messed up. Let me fix it for you." So maybe my half-tuck wasn't as smooth as I thought it was. :)

Post-baby I'm definitely feeling a bit on the top-heavy thanks to putting on some weight and nursing tatas. So knit blazers like this one have seriously become my jam. They're less constricting than a regular blazer and I think they look a little less bulky. So when I saw this one on sale at my local Old Navy, I had to grab it. I've worn it several times since returning to work, but this was the first time I managed to take photos with it. It comes in this fun stripe pattern, as well as a solid black. Brittany from Loverly Grey has come up with several awesome outfits with this blazer, and I'll confess, I'm dying to straight up copy them all. Seriously, how did we get dressed before the Internet?
 
black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 4
blazer: Old Navy (exact)  |  top: Target (exact)  |  pants: Loft (exact) last worn here  |  shoes: J. Crew Factory (exact)  |  necklace: Kendra Scott (exact)  |  bracelet: Bourbon and Boweties (exact)  |  watch: Fossil (similar)  |  earrings: Kate Spade (exact on eBay, similar)

black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 2 black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 8 black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 7 black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 6 black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 3 black and white stripe blazer, green floral shell, black pencil pants, bow flats 1

//  Sharing on What I Wore.  //

Monday, February 26, 2018

business casual

lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 6

This is one of my favorite types of outfits for work: simple tee with a pair of black pencil pants, long cardigan and flats. Easy peasy, comfortable and still polished enough for the office. It's my no-brainer, don't even have to think about it, throw on and go outfit. And it's definitely not the first time I've worn something like it on the blog (see here and here). I think the cardigan helps keep it from looking too boring - the pretty lilac hue just screams spring to me.

I snagged the tan version as a replacement for my favorite cardigan that died last summer and loved it so much I got it in pink lily as well. While this look is more business casual, I think this cardi would also look pretty dressed up with a pencil skirt or dressed down with a gray tee and jeans. I'm kind of obsessed with the idea of pairing it with a pretty floral - something like this top from Dorothy Perkins. It's already hitting temps the 80s here in Florida (crazy, amright?!?), but I'm not quite ready to embrace the warmer weather, so this outfit felt like a good compromise.

lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 3
cardigan: Banana Republic (exact)  |  tee: Target (similar, plus option) last worn here  |  pants: Loft (exact) last worn here  |  shoes: J. Crew Factory (exact)  |  necklace: Target (similar)  earrings: The Pearl Shop (similar)  |  watch: Michael Kors (two-tone version)

lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 1 lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 2 lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 4 lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 5 lilac cardigan, white tee, black pencil pants, leopard flats 7
//  Sharing on Mix it Monday.  //

Sunday, February 25, 2018

thoughts and whatnots 2.25.18

2.25.18 thoughts and whatnots
light tan cardi:  one  |  two  |  three

blog love
on teal and polka dots:

favorite sales:

whatnots:

Thursday, February 22, 2018

dressing the bump: postpartum

dressing the bump postpartum
original posts: one  |  two  |  three  |  four
five  |  six  |  seven  |  eight

Originally I intended to finish the "Dressing the Bump" series with the third trimester, but realized I've been remiss in not addressing how to dress postpartum.

I'll be the first to admit that I've been having a bit of struggle figuring out what to wear post-baby. While on maternity leave I wore leggings and big tees every day, so it didn't really matter, but that doesn't fly now that I'm back at work. My baby weight has been clinging like a bad ex-boyfriend, my stomach is still soft and poochy and my boobs are freaking ginormous. I'm not saying this to complain - I just know there are other women like me, trying to figure out how to dress their new body type and I thought I'd share what I've learned over the past few months:
DO: Buy a few staples that fit now, not what you think *might* fit in a few weeks or months, because uncomfortable, digging waistbands are.the.worst. Trust me, I've done this. And I don't recommend it. I'm not saying to go nuts buying stuff, just get a few staples to help make you feel more comfortable.

SKIP: Try to squeeze yourself into clothes that don't fit. Just because you can make it button, doesn't mean it's flattering. Been there, done that, and was uncomfortable all day. Plus too tight clothes have the tendency to make you look larger.
DO: Embrace a flowy top. A loose-fit top can help camouflage lingering tummy bulge. My trick to make a looser shirt look more streamlined and polished is to add a longer cardigan or jacket.

SKIP: Wearing clingy tops. There's nothing flattering about skin-tight clothes that show off all your lumps and bumps.
DO: Wear longer layers. Similar to dressing while pregnant, a long cardigan or knit blazer goes a long way toward pulling an outfit together and helping slim curves. 

SKIP: Wear layers that hit above the hip. At least on me, they made everything look more squatty and round.
DO: Wear dresses with an empire waist or swing fit. The goal is to skim over the belly. Empire waists are great because they hit at the smallest part of the waist and swing dresses are like flowy tops - they skim over problem areas.

SKIP: Bodycon dresses. Unless you have shapewear of steel. But who wants to be that uncomfortable all day?
DO: Invest in shapewear. If you haven't already, I highly recommend investing in some mild shapewear. It makes everything a little smoother under dresses and skirts and helps with fit. I know a lot of women love, and have had a lot of success with Spanx, but I find them to be a bit too much for everyday wear. My favorite is Maidenform's body con boyshorts. They're seamless - hooray for no panty lines!

SKIP: An ill-fitting bra. Especially if you're breastfeeding, chances are you've gone up a cup or band size. Having a bra that fits goes a long way toward feeling comfortable.
DO: Invest in shoes that fit. During my first pregnancy, as well as this one, my feet grew a half a size! I went back to my original size 9 after loosing the baby weight the first time around, but since that hasn't happened yet, comfortable shoes are a must. If, like me, you're not much of a heel wearer, I recommend shoes with a pointed-toe to help elongate the leg. 

Most importantly, pick pieces that make you feel happy and confident. Take a deep breath and realize that this isn't forever. While your body will probably never be quite the same as it was pre-baby, it will go back to a more normal state. My plan is to embrace the shape I am and keeping finding new, fun ways to dress it!

For more maternity outfit inspiration, check out my dressing the bump: third trimester, second trimester and third trimester posts.  

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

my new favorite dress

clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 3

Ya'll - can I tell you how much I love this dress? It's comfortable, the perfect length, figure-flattering AND I scored it for $20 this weekend. Other pluses: the skirt is lined, though the top is not (but I didn't find it to be see-through) and the ruffle sleeves are so dang fun. The only thing that would have made it even more perfect would be if it had pockets.
 
I mentioned on Instgram that the top was pulling a little bit when I tried it on due to my huge breastfeeding tatas, but I fixed it with a small safety pin. If you don't want to poke a hole in your top, I found a few fixes on BuzzFeed.

It's 100% cotton, which sometimes can wrinkle, but these photos were taken during my lunch break, and you can see while there's a little bit of wrinkling, overall the dress stayed nice-looking. It's on sale for $35 + an additional 20% off online (no code required), if you're interested. There's also a really pretty navy floral version that I might just have to add to my closet.

I swear I'm not trying to sell you my dress, I just love it so much that I wanted to share. I think it's the perfect postpartum dress - forgiving in the tummy, a flattering fit, feminine and made me feel confident and pretty. What's not to love about that? :)

clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 6
dress: Old Navy (exact)  |  shoes: J. Crew Factory (exact) last worn here watch: Fossil (cute alternative)  |  earrings: The Pearl Shop (similar)

clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 5 clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 7 clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 1 clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 2 clip dot ruffle sleeve dress 4


//  Sharing on What I Wore.  //

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

ocean hues

white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 1

I'm not really sure this this light aqua/mint/pool drapey tank is considered a true neutral, but for me this outfit has a soft, neutral - almost oceany- feel. Fitting for a Florida coastal winter. :) To add a little bit of edge to an otherwise soft look, I threw on a pair of cognac booties to anchor the outfit. I'm not 100% sure this outfit feels like "me" but for a girl who resisted the white jean trend, I sure have fully embraced them in the past year and a half.

As an alternative to white jeans, I think this drapey tank would also look super cute tucked into a skirt (obsessed with this scalloped mini) and paired with a cardigan or blazer or worn by itself with white jeans and sandals come summertime. If you can't already tell, I'm a big fan of this top and may just have my eye on the bright pink and lilac. A girl can never have too many tops, right? Though my husband (and groaning closet) might beg to differ. :)

white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 3 top: Banana Republic (exact)  |  cardigan: Banana Republic (exact)  |  jeans: J. Crew Factory (exact) last worn here  |  booties: Vince Camuto (similar) last worn herenecklace: Stella and Dot (exact) last worn here  |  bracelets: Bourbon and Boweties (exact pearl, similar aqau)  |  watch: Michael Kors (two-tone version)  |  earrings: The Pearl Shop (similar)

white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 5 white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 6 white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 7 white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 2 white jeans, tan cardi, aqua shell, cognac booties 4


//  Sharing on Hello Monday, Mix it Monday and The Style File.  //

Sunday, February 18, 2018

thoughts and whatnots 2.18.18

2.18.18 thoughts and whatnots
pink duster cardigan: one  |  two  |  three

blog love:

on teal and polka dots:
  • on the blog: All about the color pink this week, with a midi dress post, and duster cardigan two ways - with a dress and with pencil pants.
  • on instagram: The cutest little Valentine.
  • on pinterest: While my daughter's birthday isn't until May, I've been searching for party ideas - my favorite is all the adorable unicorn things - just look at this darling cake!
  • I bit the bullet so to speak I got a proper, grown up .com! Teal and Polka Dots feels so official. :) I figured it was about time already since I’ve been on here for about three and a half years - how time flies! 

favorite sales:

whatnots:
  • what I'm reading: "Coming Home" by Rosamunde Pilcher.
  • what I'm watching: Still all about watching cookie decorating videos on YouTube. I've gotten my daughter completely obsessed with it as well! :)
  • what I'm crushing on: All the pretty lilac things - like this stunning lace midi dress, these jacquard stain tassel loafers and this insanely expensive - but on so pretty - wingtip bag.
  • what I'm looking forward to: All the spring-like weather we're having right now!

Friday, February 16, 2018

same cardigan, different day

long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 3

Today I'm showing a different way to wear Wednesday's pink duster cardigan with a loose fit top and pencil pants. This is actually, kind of, an outfit of accidents: I started with the top, then added the cardigan because it matched the stamen in the top, then threw on some pants (because I didn't feel like wearing a skirt) and added the teal shoes...because, well they were one of the few pairs that still fit me.

I'm I the only one who has chub scout feet post-pregnancy? My feet have grown a half size after baby. Same thing happened after I had my daughter, I went up a half shoe size, then about a year later I (finally) lost the baby weight and my foot went back down to my pre-pregnancy size. So I realize my shoes don't exactly match, but I actually ended up kinda of liking how they looked anyway. A happy accident. :)

long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 4
cardigan: Forever21 (similar|  top: Modcloth (exact in other patterns)  |  pants: Loft (exact)  |  shoes: J. Crew (exact in other colors, similar)  |  necklace: Loft (cute alternative)  |  watch: Michael Kors (two-tone version)

long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 6 long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 7 long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 2 long rose cardigan, navy floral top, navy pencil pants, teal flats 1


//  Sharing on Fabulous Friday.  //

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

happy valentine's day

long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 4

Happy Valentine's Day friends! Are you doing something special to celebrate the day? Valentine's isn't really the biggest deal for me - Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas are more my jam - however, I do love any excuse to wear pink and eat chocolate. :) So no big plans here, just lunch with my husband and hanging out with my little Valentines tonight.

A few posts back, I mentioned how much I loved wearing this dress while pregnant and that I fully intended to wear it post maternity. Well, here it is, and I love it now just as much now as I did then! I originally wore it on its own with a pair of sandals, but I like how a long cardi and a pair of booties transition it for cooler weather. It's still available in limited sizes, and I also found a non-maternity option.

long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 5
cardigan: Forever 21 (similar) last worn here  |  dress: GAP maternity (exact, non-maternity option) last worn here  |  booties: Vince Camuto (exact) last worn here  |  necklace: Kendra Scott (exact)   |  watch: Michael Kors (two-tone version)  |  bracelet: Kendra Scott (similar)

long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 3 long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 2 long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 7 long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 1 long pink cardigan, black swing dress, mushroom booties 6


In honor of Valentine's Day, here a look back at some of my favorite pink looks:

pink outfits
original posts: one  |  two  |  three  |  four
five  |  six  |  seven  |  eight

//  Sharing on What I Wore.  //

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

pink midi dress

blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 1

I've been all about comfy jersey dresses lately, and this blush pink one is no exception. Leading up to Valentine's Day, I've been all about wearing pink, and I kinda doubt that's going to change after tomorrow. It's such a fun pre-spring color - though it's definitely spring weather here in Florida. 

While this was a comfy outfit, I can't say it's one of my favorite looks. Though this isn't my first go-around, it's been challenging figuring out how to dress postpartum. Things I do love about this outfit: the pretty pink color, the soft coziness of the jersey dress and my delicate gold layered necklace. I'm thinking if I had ditched the cardigan or maybe worn a heel I would have liked the execution of this outfit a lot better! But let's be real, cardigans are my jam and I very rarely wear heels these days, so at least this outfit is true to me. :)

blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 2
cardigan: Loft (exact in navy, similar)   |   dress: Journey Five via Jane  (exact)   |   shoes: J. Crew Factory (exact)  |  necklace: Stella & Dot (exact)  |  watch: Michael Kors (two-tone version)

blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 4 blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 3 blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 6 blush dress, cream cardigan, bow flats 5